SOAR - Thessaloniki Chapter

Thessaloniki joined the SOAR family in July 2018. The Armenian presence in Greece began centuries ago when Armenians settled in the wider area of Thessaly, Macedonia, and Thrace. Armenians in Greece, however, acquired the character of a community after the 1920s, when 70,000 to 80,000 survivors of the Armenian Genocide fled to Greece from Cilicia, Smyrna, Ionia, Constantinople and Asia Minor, scattering all over Greece.

Today, the number of Armenians in Greece is estimated at approximately 30,000, living mainly in Attica (Athens, Piraeus and the suburbs) and in smaller communities in Thessaloniki, Kavala, Komotini, Xanthi, Alexandroupolis, Didimoticho, Orestiada and Crete. The majority of Greco-Armenians are Armenian Apostolic. There are a number of Armenian institutions in Greece, including two kindergartens and elementary schools and one high school, in Athens and Piraeus, which belong to the Armenian Blue Cross; the Armenian Community Cultural Center in Thessaloniki; and Armeniki, an amateur soccer club in Athens.

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Board of Directors:

Dr. Iren Hovhannisyan

Iren Hovhannisyan was born in Armenia and moved to Greece in 2010 to pursue her academic studies. She holds a PhD degree in English Language and Philology from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She has recently completed her Postdoctoral research and right now she has focused her research interests on issues related to bilingualism and heritage language preservation. During her academic studies, she has been awarded a number of scholarships and research excellence grants. Alongside her academic development, she was determined to preserve her national identity, language and culture and to serve her knowledge for this end. She is a volunteer teacher of Armenian in the Armenian Saturday school of Thessaloniki and a member of ARS Thessaloniki “ANI” chapter.