A shipment of over 400 Greek-language books has been sent to members of the diaspora in Latin America by the government of Greece.
This is the first time that the Greek government has ever sent books to members of the diaspora in that part of the world.
The books, which will help those of Greek descent learn their ancestral tongue, will be sent to Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Peru, and Argentina.
Reportedly, educational materials to learn Greek, especially books, were the items most requested by members of the Greek diaspora in South America.
Through a combination of efforts between the Office of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Education, the Greek state was able to build a new cultural bridge between Greece and the far-flung diaspora in Latin America.
It is estimated that over 50,000 people of Greek descent live in all of Latin America, with sizable populations in the huge nations of Brazil and Argentina.
Most Greeks who emigrated to South America did so in the mid-20th century, after the Second World War, but some had come much earlier, in the late 1800’s.
Despite assimilating, Greeks in Latin America were often able to resist losing elements of their culture and religion. However, one’s mother tongue can easily be lost after separation from Greece for generations.
The six boxes full of books sent off to the Greeks of Latin America will help build stronger community, linguistic, and cultural bonds between Greece and the communities of its diaspora in Latin America.