Over the last 15 months, we’ve worked with some amazing people and right at the top of the list is Anna, owner of the Hotel Manthos. It’s no exaggeration to say that the hotel was critical to our success in Alexandreia.
Volunteers need somewhere safe and comfortable to stay but Anna did so much more for everyone who stayed there to make them feel part of a loving family, for us as an organisation with our constant demands and for the refugees from the camp. Nothing was too much trouble and always with a smile.
This family run hotel was perfect. Being close to the camp, economical, always open, and with a large restaurant which we took over every morning for our briefing sessions was what we needed. What made it special is how Anna but and her wonderful team – Vaya, Tasos, Sakis and Yannis – made us feel at home.
Teaching Greek, treating us to special Christmas and Easter celebrations, countless birthday cakes, preparing breakfast, looking after people when they were unwell, getting us the best deals, late night whiskey, asking after family, storing our stuff, the list goes on. It was a second home.
Anna hates the idea that we had a business relationship because she felt like we were guests in her family home doing everything she could to give us the best in Greek hospitality.
It was her birthday in February and we managed to return the birthday cake favour but what was really special was seeing her spend the whole day getting messages from all the volunteers whose hearts had been touched by this amazing lady.
Part of what we do is investing in the local economy and we can measure that. If only we could measure the good that is generated by good people doing good things for others.