Melbourne Greek Community AGM postponed by week

The 2021 Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and Victoria (GOCMV) has again been postponed until January 16 due to growing concerns over the increase in COVID-19 cases.

The AGM scheduled for this Sunday will now be held on January 16 at 1:00 p.m. at the same location – the Andrianakos Center at Alphington Grammar in Alphington, Melbourne.

The meeting will be open to those who have been members of GOCMV for six months or more and will ratify the minutes of the AGM 2020. GOCMV President Bill Papastergiadis OAM will present his report and annual financial report for fiscal year 2021 and the appointment of the auditors for 2022 will be announced.

The names of the candidates for the election of a new board of directors will be announced and the election of the electoral committee will also take place.

In a letter to members ahead of the AGM, Mr Papastergiadis said the annual report showed how the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the organization, but also reflected a slow recovery.

“Along with drastically reduced revenues, our cultural calendar has been hit time and again by repeated blockages and as a result we have not been able to host all of our award-winning festivals,” Mr Papastergiadis wrote. “We have, however, been successful in organizing and carrying out a number of projects and activities thanks in large part to the diligent efforts of the Board of Directors and our dedicated staff.”

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He noted that Pricewaterhouse Coopers auditors had indicated that the forecast for GOCMV was promising thanks to the acquisitions in Alphington and Bulleen, as well as the hard work of the community team to provide millions of dollars in grants to the organization.

“We have resolved the issues of forced acquisition of the Alphington Bike Trail and Bulleen whose revenue injection will help stabilize the community’s finances and immediately improve their programs,” wrote Mr. Papastergiadis.

In his letter, he also noted among the highlights of the past year the community’s enhanced online education program that had attracted students to Victoria and Interstate; the continuation and streaming of GOCMV language and culture seminars, as well as the holding of the inaugural John Berger Memorial Lecture.

Over the past year, the organization has also commemorated the Greek Bicentennial at the Evangelismos Greek Orthodox Church in East Melbourne and has been able to host the Greek Music Festival on Lonsdale Street, the Flavors of Greece Festival and the Live at the Greek.

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“We have worked successfully with the federal and state governments on a successful community outreach program that delivered vaccines to their neighborhood,” Papatergiadis also noted in his letter.

The organization, he said, will this year launch the new Hub for Greeks on Russell Street, near the Greek Center for Contemporary Culture. The Hub was announced before the pandemic and is funded in part by grants obtained by the GCM from the federal and state governments, each contributing $ 2,500,000 to the project.

He also noted that the GOCMV was lobbying the federal government for a new tax treaty with Greece that will prevent double taxation.

“We are also entering into talks on a bilateral healthcare treaty between the two countries for respective citizens traveling,” Papastergiadis said.

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