Volunteers from around the country have joined the effort to help residents of Mandra in western Attica to pick up the pieces after the devastation wrought by the deadly flash floods earlier this month.
Companies, volunteer groups and ordinary people are offering food, clothing and first-aid essentials as well as lending machinery to help shift the tons of mud left in the wake of the floods. Children have also joined in the effort to distribute food, water and other essentials.
The floods claimed 21 lives and caused serious damage to the homes and businesses of thousands of people in one the region’s poorest areas.
“We need essentials and later we will need heating appliance. Not one boiler room has remained intact,” said a municipal employee involved in the coordination of the relief effort.
According to the latest estimates, the floods damaged a total of 1,512 buildings in Mandra and neighboring Nea Peramos.
Moreover, flood victims, seemingly oblivious to their own plight, are helping each other.
“In tough times, we help one another,” said Yiannis Adam, who has been distributing assistance using a small truck he has been renting since last Tuesday. Adam’s betting shop was totally destroyed by the floods.
Christos Rokas, whose kebab shop was totally ruined, told Kathimerini the generous contributions of food by volunteers and others has at least ensured that no one will go hungry.
“We thank everyone from Crete to Evia. We don’t have a food problem anymore. Mandra won’t starve,” said Rokas, whose shop is now being used as a warehouse for a variety of supplies.
Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Authority has been distributing hundreds of portions of food to residents daily.
The initiative began on November 17, and since then the CAA has been collecting trays of food from carriers and aviation companies – Aegean Airlines, Olympic Air, Astra Airlines, MIG, Sky Express and Skyserv – which are distributed from Mandra Town Hall.