On December 3rd, NEPOMAK UK held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) at the Greek Cypriot Brotherhood in north London.
Following reports received from the NEPOMAK UK President Adrian Patsalos and outgoing Treasurer Alexandros Mantzalos, members ratified the 22 nominations received for their National Executive Committee (NEC) for the 2023-2025 term. This includes young Cypriots aged 18-30 living in England, Scotland and Wales.
The NEC re-elected Adrian Patsalos as NEPOMAK UK President, Katie Bedrossian as the new Vice President, Miriam Pittalis as the new Secretary and Daniel Rowson as the new Treasurer of the organisation.
During the President’s report, Adrian Patsalos summarised the many events and activities held during 2022 and 2023. He emphasised that the organisation held a record number of events during this term, paying tribute to and thanking all the members who volunteered to help organise and lead these events.
All events in 2022, were utilised to mark the organisation’s 20th anniversary, including a dinner with the then Foreign Minister of the Republic of Cyprus Mr Ioannis Kasoulides in attendance as the Guest of Honour.
Following the Coronavirus pandemic and the removal of the restrictions that were in place, weekend aways returned in Birmingham, Swansea and Glasgow in 2022 as well as Southend-On-Sea and Edinburgh in 2023. During these weekend aways, NEPOMAK UK members engaged with Cypriots who lived locally and met with local Members of Parliament, to raise awareness of the organisation, as well as the Cyprus issue, sharing the desire of young Cypriots for a free and united Cyprus.
Flagship social events such as the Boat Party returned engaging both new and existing members, as well as the charity flagship campaign Santa Shoebox, where NEPOMAK UK managed to send shoeboxes to our enclaved compatriots in Rizokarpasso (despite the barriers created by Brexit and the backlog created by COVID-19), but also Ukrainian refugees in the UK who fled an illegal invasion similar to the one Cypriots did back in 1974.
NEPOMAK UK also commemorated our missing compatriots by decorating a Christmas tree at the Greek Cypriot Brotherhood both in 2022 and 2023 with pictures of our missing compatriots.
New events with the Armenian, Jewish and Indian diasporas extended NEPOMAK UK’s and the UK Cypriot community’s reach and created new collaborations where young members of other diasporas can share their culture and traditions with others.
Museum trips supported by the Cultural Section of the High Commission were also organised, as well as a poetry event with Cypriot authors and an event with Thalassaemia UK where more than 50 people got tested on the day. All these events enriched NEPOMAK UK’s calendars with alternative events to the traditional flagship events held in the past.
NEPOMAK UK members also engaged with Cypriot officials including former President of the Republic of Cyprus Mr Nicos Anastasiades, newly elected President Mr Nikos Christodoulides, the President of the House of Representatives Mrs Annita Demetriou and ministers and commissioners both from the previous and new governments.
Thanking the outgoing committee members, the NEPOMAK UK President said that without them, the organisation would have not increased the membership of its committee year on year with members being elected both from London and across the UK.
Members thanked the outgoing Executive Officers Christina Alexandrou (Vice President) and Alexandros Mantzalos (Treasurer) for their time, passion and dedication towards NEPOMAK UK, the UK Cypriot community and Cyprus. Christina served NEPOMAK UK in various roles for many years, dedicating much of her free time for the development and enrichment of events and initiatives for the organisation’s members. Alexandros as Treasurer, shared his knowledge as a chartered accountant, advancing the way the organisation both prepares and maintains its budgets and accounts.
The 22 newly elected members of NEPOMAK UK’s NEC are:
- Adrian Patsalos (President)
- Katie Bedrossian (Vice President)
- Miriam Pittalis (Secretary)
- Daniel Rowson (Treasurer)
- Alexis Kyriacou
- Anoushka Monzon Ladas
- Chrisa Avraam (Wales Representative)
- Christina Alexandrou
- Christina Athanasiou (Scotland Representative)
- Christos Tuton
- Constantine Alexandrou
- Elle Zacharia
- Maria Christofi
- Mary Joannou
- Matthaios Tuton
- Nicholas Droussiotis
- Penny Zacharia
- Rico Joannou
- Sophia Lytrides
- Sophia Photiou
- Theodoulos Theodoulou
- Thomas Apostolou
NEPOMAK UK is concluding its 2023 Santa Shoebox campaign with the delivery of the shoeboxes to the enclaved children in Rizokarpasso, Cyprus. They are fundraising to cover the costs of collecting and transporting the shoeboxes to the enclaved in Cyprus and the refugees hosted by Refugee Council in the UK. You can support the campaign by donating online via: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/santashoebox2023