Melbourne resident Peter Darmos made headlines recently for his generosity, after he was spotted handing out $100 cash notes to queuing jobless workers outside Box Hill’s Centrelink outlet.
His act was selfless with the Greek Australian disclosing his identity only after prompted by Neos Kosmos to do so, in the hope that others would imitate his act.
What followed was a wave of publicity and expressions of gratitude, with the latest one coming from the Treasurer of Australia Josh Frydenberg.
Mr. Darmos, a lawyer entrepreneur from Karies, Laconia, handed out a total of $10,000 to welfare recipients who are amongst those hardest hit by the coronavirus impact.
When asked what prompted his action, he said he felt “sick to the stomach” after seeing on the news people, some of which had become unemployed for the first time in their lives, forming queues outside Centrelink offices.
“These are tens of thousands of fellow humans who lost everything[…] I decided to do something about it.
“I came here as a six-year-old from a village in Greece and this country has been good to me,” he said, explaining he wanted to pay it forward.
Shortly after his initiative became widely known, Mr. Darmos received a call from the Federal Treasurer who thanked him personally for his generosity.
Mr. Darmos was quick to take the opportunity and share with Mr. Frydenberg his views on measures the government should be taking to tackle the crisis while supporting the population.
The recommendations were the same ones he told Neos Kosmos during his interview on Friday:
“What we need now is not stimulus packages for the economy. What we need is for the government to guarantee these basic things:
- Food for all
- Stop evictions to anyone unable to pay their rent
- Freeze mortgage payments
- Suspend payments for electricity and gas”
Mr. Darmos told Mr. Frydenberg that these would ensure Australians’ ability to endure the crisis, with the Treasurer saying he would relay the recommendations to the Prime Minister for consideration.