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History



The Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece  was founded in 1946, aiming in support of blind people and raising public and State awareness about the problems they face.

In 1946, Michael Tsamados donated the area where now its facilities are.

In 1951, a two-floor building was built with money donated by Georgios and Evgenia Empirikos. The building originally housed all services and the brush and broom workshop, with its entrance at 198 Doiranis str..

In 1954, a Royal decree was passed, where the products from the brush and broom workshop production line were sold by direct assignment to armed forces and public organisations. President of the Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece council was Lavria Protopapadaki.

In 1955, Theodoros Petrakopoulos donated a 400m2 building, which is originally used as boarding house and in April of the same year the telephonists school was founded.

In 1975, the first floor of the main building of the Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece in 17 Athinas str. was built by the American Friends of the Blind in Greece organisation. The funds derived from the sale of the premises of the Agricultural and Technical School "Georgios Podas" which had been founded in 1949 in Sepolia for blind people of Greece, through donations of Georgios Podas Andreas Giarvis, A. Thomopoulos and others.

In 1977, the brush and broom workshop and the administrative services of the organisation were transferred to the new building.

In 1979, the second floor was built through donation from the General Secretary, Lina Resti.

In 1984, The tactual museum was founded and was housed in the two-floor building in 198 Doiranis str. and the Metal Processing Unit was created and was housed in the old boarding house's premises.

In 1990, the Braille Printing Centre was modernised, after the Thiel, Impacto and Braillo printers addition, through donations by Eugenides Foundation, Doret Karaiosifoglou and the Greek Parliament.

In 1991, Computer classes for blind people were started, using the screen reader Hal, which was adapted for Greek, after cooperation with Dolphin Systems with E.U. funds.

In 1997, the Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece was certified as a Specialised Centre of Vocational Training and in the framework of its program, it conducted computer training programs, for specialisations necessary for its workshops etc.

Since 2009, in collaboration with the Vocational Training SA with the disabled people Training Center, the Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece implemented training programs for unemployed blind people in "Ceramic-Sculpture" and "Administrators" with an emphasis on Computers.

In 1998, The Metal Processing Unit earns  a quality assurance system (ΕΛΟΤ ΕΝ ISO 9002) and extends its cooperation with companies of the public and private sector.

In 2000, the L. Kallergis theatre scene was created in the main building's event hall.

In 2004, the Tactual museum reopened, after having been destroyed by 1999 earthquakes, being from then on accessible to people with reduced mobility.

In September the Assembly Department was launched, with the valuable support of the Siemens company.

In 2005 started the process of creating a Training and Rehabilitation Centre and a Hostel for people with visual impairments, through donation by George and Maris Vergotis Foundation.

In 2006, the foundation's website was created, aiming in serving people with visual impairments through the Internet, and promoting the Metal Processing Unit products.

In 2010, a new linen workshop was created.

In 2012, The Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece acquires upon request and envelope deposit, the type B and C managerial capacity for 2007-2013.

All these years, the Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece, in the frame of education and training of the visually impaired has organised many actions and has participated in training programmes, organised by the European Community. The Lighthouse for the Blind in Greece is a non-profit, especially certified provider of Social Services from the Ministry of Health Welfare Department.