During the COVID-19 lockdown in Greece, “Home Assistants” help vulnerable groups in Thessaloniki with their daily needs like shopping food or medicines. The municipality provides daily meals for people in need, supported by local restaurants. And the city’s tv channel broadcasts lessons for students as well as messages from children to their grandparents.
On a national level, Greece went into a total lockdown to limit the spread of the corona virus. People are only allowed to go out for work, to buy food or medicine, visit a doctor, walk a pet, exercise by themselves or in groups of two.
The city of Thessaloniki has summarised its local measures to provide an overview:
- The municipality is obliged with the surveillance of the restrictions, but it has to serve all the citizens with their needs as they have to be staying at home.
- For the protection of the Municipality’s venues and employees, the services are not open for the public. Only a few basic services are still in operation, as waste, civil protection, financial department and registry office (after appointment).
- Τhe municipality works 24/7 for the disinfection of all the public spaces and especially the main venues of the hospitals.
- A program called “Home Assistants” helps vulnerable groups with their daily needs (shopping, pharmacy, etc). Municipal police is our main contributor to this, because it operates on a continuity plan and works with surveillance, but also supports vulnerable groups.
- Most of the services are now digital and a lot of the employees work remotely. The city provides all the information needed on the municipality’s site. Phone lines for psychological support have been established.
- For underprivileged people, the municipality provides ready meals every day. Restaurants that are now closed provide raw material, which would have been otherwise, and the municipality prepares the meals for people in need.
- A new place has been refurbished in order to accommodate homeless people, along with the use of hotels of the city.
- The municipality asked from the entrepreneurs of the city to raise a fund for the medical needs of the hospitals of the city.
- For all enterprises that are now closed, the municipality has decided to diminish the local taxes for at least two months.
- For students staying home, the municipality’s broadcasting station (television) provides tutor lessons. They also broadcast video messages recorded by children to their beloved ones in distance, such as grandchildren sending messages to their grandparents.
Contact: Stella Psarropoulou