The Observatory with the University of the Aegean visits Naxos and Amorgos

The surveys of the Observatory in Naxos and Amorgos were successfully completed on Tuesday 27/9 and Wednesday 28/9 respectively, by a research team, consisting of Ms. Katerina Vgena and Ms. Katerina Mavroidi, from the Department of Cultural Technology and Communication of the University of the Aegean, with which the Observatory cooperates for this project.

 

On behalf of the Municipality of Naxos and Small Cyclades, the Deputy Mayor of Social Protection, Mr. Manios, and Ms. Protonotariou, Head of the Autonomous Department of Social Protection, Education and Culture, took part in the survey and spoke about the problems they identify and the efforts being made to constantly improve the living conditions on the island, by finding ways to increase the residents’ income. Then, the Observatory team visited the Community Center of Naxos where interviews were held with Ms. Emmanuela Vasilaki, administrative employee, Ms. Irini Moustaka, psychologist, and Ms. Paraskevi Oikonomou, social worker. A common point of the discussions at the Community Center was the realization that emphasis should be placed on the creation and strengthening of new infrastructures in addition to the provision of allowances.

 

Finally, the surveys were completed with individual interviews with citizens receiving social allowances (Guaranteed Minimum Income, etc.). Their answers showed that the citizens in Naxos seem to deal with their problems in a dynamic way. Nevertheless, they emphasized the need for the creation of infrastructures in the fields of health and creative employment for children. The need for a mental health specialist was also noted, as some residents have online sessions or visit other areas (e.g. Athens) but not often due to the difficulty of getting to these areas and the cost of travel.

 

                                 

 

The next stop of the Observatory was Amorgos, where on Wednesday 28/9 a field survey took place with the participation of the Mayor, Mr. Eleftherios Karaiskos, and Ms. Sophia Nomikou, an employee of the Municipality.

 

 

Many issues related to the social and economic sector were discussed as well as the actions and efforts being made to improve living conditions on the island. Concerning the operation of the Municipality’s services, the main problem is understaffing. Another important issue mentioned by all the people interviewed is traveling within the island.

Even the locals face a problem as they often have to rent a car to get around. Bus services are available mainly in the summer due to tourism, while in winter the situation is more difficult, that’s why one usually serves the other by even hitchhiking to get around. Moreover, they highlighted the need for double infrastructures due to the long distances between the villages of the island.