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Stray dogs of Athens at the heart of new documentary

The film pays homage to the volunteers making a difference in crisis-stricken Greece

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A still from Greek Animal Rescue. Photo: Kathimerini

03 November 2017

A new documentary by Menelaos Karamaggiolis gives insight into life in Greece over the past seven years, using the stories of stray animals.

Part of the Cine Doc initiative, Greek Animal Rescue features Menios as the protagonist, a three-legged dog that is sick and has suffered a history of abuse.

Having formerly lived in Aspropyrgos, an industrial desert next to a tar lake that is known to swallow animals and humans, he has since been adopted by a family in England and is finally living a happy life.

In a bid to pay homage to the many tireless volunteers working throughout Greece during the crisis, the story features a group of young volunteers coordinated through Facebook who work in Aspropyrgos and look after the stray dogs.

Meanwhile, Greek Animal Rescue, an animal welfare organisation based in London launches a European campaign for 'Greekies' - strays from Greece that are particularly popular for adoption abroad.

According to filmmaker Karamaggiolis, Greece's strays are popular for adoption given how grateful they are when given a new home; due to their horrible living conditions, they have a reputation for openly returning the love they receive.

The film carries a message of hope, which is precisely what keeps the strays living, the hope of a new beginning.

Produced with the support of the Onassis Foundation and Onassis Cultural Center, the film is part of a series of social documentaries titled Meetings with Notable People in recognition and celebration of the everyday heroes who manage to find their own way to live through crisis.

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