On the 9th September 1962 migrants from the Meteora region who came to Australia in search of better opportunities in the aftermath of the second world war, founded The Meteora Thessalias Benevolent Society, “Meteora”.
With backgrounds primarily in agriculture, trades and homemaking, with little formal education and next to no English speaking skills, Australia was a largely unfamiliar and intimidating place for these new arrivals. Out of this adversity Meteora was formed as an apolitical and completely voluntary charitable organisation with the stated objective of supporting the emotional, social and at time financial needs of its members. It was an organization that assisted its members to cope with the alienation that was common across most migrant groups during 1950’s and 60’s Australia. Additionally it provided a channel through which they could express and celebrate the customs and traditions unique to their part of the world and upbringing, and to introduce these traditions to their children.
Meteora held its first social event, a dinner dance the 29th December 1962. Over the course of the last 45 years there have been countless social and fundraising events organized. By the 1980’s it was common for dinner dances to exceed 400 attendees. As the offspring of the first generation of members came of age a variety of other function were introduced including harbour cruises, bus trips, luncheons, bar & disco nights and children’s picnics.
At the heart of the organisation is the desire to help people in need. Since its inception, Meteora has donated to various worthwhile causes within their language community and to other higher profile causes such as the Heart Foundation, Cochlear Ear Foundation, the Royal Blind Society and the Breast Cancer Institute of NSW.
In response to changing times, changing demographics and a general decline in member activity and participation, the 2003 committee embarked on a “re-positioning” of the Meteora organisation. This has involved modernising the logo, organising events that appeal to the tastes and lifestyle of a new generation, supporting causes that are relevant to this newer generation and focussing on the values handed down by the founders as commonality rather than the regional nuances which defined the organisation’s identity since inception. The values handed down by the founders, the common thread between the Meteora of old and the Meteora of now is best explained by our current Mission statement:
“To be a trusted friend in the lives of our members, supporting their family, community and charity needs”,
Our organisation, your organisation, provides opportunities for individuals to contribute to relevant, worthwhile and meaningful causes in a rewarding, fun and family-friendly way.
In 2005 the committee selected three charities to support over the three year period 2005-07, these are: the Children’s Hospital in Westmead, Beyond Blue (the youth depression organisation) and The Greek Aged Care Hostel in Earlwood, NSW. We have committed to donating at least half of all profits made over the 3 year period 2005-07 across these organisations.
By being a part of our organisation you will be making a positive difference to many people’s lives.