- “Where Is the World?” Daphne Matziaraki’s 4.1 MILES: A Response to the Refugee Crisis
- George Grapsas of Tylikratis Soccer Club: Sporting Philanthropy
- Priebus, Gigicos and Bilirakis Receive Medal of St. Paul
- United We Stand: Pancretan Youth Association Winter 2017 Conference
- Hellenic Classical Charter School Sends Students to Greece for Educational Research Trip
Ionian Village Reflection
by Eleni Sabracos
Take a moment and imagine a place free of judgment, a place where it doesn’t matter what you are wearing, how much money you have, what school you go to, who your parents are, who your friends are, what mistakes you have made, what shape or size you are, none of that matters.
A place where you can leave behind all your problems, a place where you don’t have any worries, where you aren’t constantly being ridiculed and yelled at, a place where you are free to be whoever you want to be. A place where you can meet people like you, people who are searching for something, people who want the exact same thing that you do. Imagine a place where you can drop your cool card, put on your silly pants, and be nothing less than the best version of yourself. A place where everything you have previously known and have believed in, is put to the ultimate test.
This place I am describing sounds almost unreal, it sounds like heaven. It sounds awesome. This summer I went there. I went to this magical place. I thought that I had just signed up for summer camp, you know I filled out a form, paid money, got on a plane to Greece, and I was there, right? Wrong. Ionian Village is not just any ordinary summer camp, it is an opportunity to change your life. This is one of the hardest things I have ever had to write because none of my words can do justice to how amazing Ionian Village is. I don’t know how to explain to you how incredible it felt for once in my life to feel a part of something so revolutionary. To feel loved by so many people. To be constantly surrounded by happiness and positivity. To feel like I could do anything I set my mind to and if I failed I had 200 people who truly cared about me standing right behind me.
My summer spent at Ionian Village was the best summer of my entire life and I can keep telling you all the reasons why it was so amazing, all the places we traveled that were so amazing, and all the people I met that were so amazing. But you will never be able to understand how life changing it is, until you have lived it. Every day I look down at my wrist to where I always am wearing my Ionian Village “#areyouready” wrist band and not only is it a reminder of everything I have learned there, but I like to think that it is my one connection to everyone I have met at Ionian Village. You will see things at Ionian Village and experience things that you simply cannot experience anywhere else. I have never felt so confident and strong about my faith, and I have never felt so right in this world. Three weeks! That’s all it took for me to change my life. That’s all it took after 16 years: a leap of faith.