Source: China State Council Information Office
Chinese expatriates in Greece won the warm praise of Athenians on Sunday for taking the initiative to clean up a popular beach on the capital’s southern coast.
Dozens of members of the Chinese community, of all ages and professions, armed with gloves and litter bags, flooded Palaio Faliro beach to pick up plastic wrappers, bottle caps and cigarette butts left behind by swimmers or carried along by the wind.
“Be part of something bigger than yourself: volunteerism,” was the main slogan printed on t-shirts several participants were wearing.
This was one of the key messages the organizers of the event, the Sino-Hellenic Investors’ Confederation, wanted to convey, they told Xinhua.
Greeks embraced the idea and joined in, when seeing Chinese volunteers in action and thanked them for always offering a helping hand to Greek society.
The Confederation has organized similar events lately and plans to do more in the future to contribute to the place they now call second home.
“With this kind of events we can make more Greek friends and help the Chinese better enjoy their life here,” said Xie Min, member of the Confederation.
“I hope the association would unite the Chinese living in Greece to take part in more social services and activities like this. A good bilateral relationship between China and Greece needs everyone to work together,” said Ding Yonghua, a counselor from the Chinese embassy in Greece.
Raising awareness for environmental protection is a cause that concerns all citizens of the world.
Despina Riniou, a local resident, volunteered to join the Chinese on the spot.
“It is a marvelous initiative. We always welcome such actions which are meaningful for the area,” she said.
Guo Yida, 19, is a student living in Athens with his family. Coming from an industrial region of China, “I know the importance of protecting the environment,” he said.
“We want to make our own efforts to help protect the environment here, and integrate well into the local society,” his father, Guo Yang, added.
Sunday’s event was organized in coordination with the municipality of Palaio Faliro and local SKAI media group’s corporate social responsibility program “Oloi Mazi Boroume” (All together we can).