My name is Achilles Martinis. I live in Lausanne, Switzerland and I am a high school student. I am originally from Athens, Greece, where I was born and grew up for the first 11 years of my life until my family decided to move to Switzerland. In the most recent years, I have become very aware of the problem of the refugee children in Switzerland and my home country, Greece, where this problem is very intense and worrisome. I have been volunteering in my free time, to offer these children the best possible of my abilities, time and energy in order to help them adapt as easily as possible to their new environment. I have therefore organised football matches for them, I have tried to help them in speaking French, and in general, I have tried to support and encourage them by creating a joyful and playful atmosphere with them.
In my spare time, I also listen to music, play classical guitar and study at the music conservatory of Lausanne. Music inspires and motivates me and I believe that it can have a similarly beneficial effect on other peoples' lives as well: it can improve the mood, unite and encourage people.
By bridging my two interests, music and volunteering to help refugee children, I thought I could use my musical knowledge and skills to help these kids even more, through music. From this initial stimulus, I decided to create the concept "Musical Dream Journey of Love".
Musical Dream Journey of Love
The idea behind the "Musical Dream Journey of Love" is to organise concerts with the purpose of collecting funds to be used for the purchase of musical instruments and payment of music instructors for the refugee children. The organisation of a concert involves a number of tasks such as the booking of the venue, the invitation of performers, the research for the organisation to support and cooperate with, the promotion of the event, the attraction of sponsors, and the financial planning. It is a challenging project but the hope behind this idea is that music education will create for these children new dreams for the future through inspiring them and triggering their creativity and optimism.
Concert March 31, 2018
As my country of origin is Greece where the refugee problem is very exacerbated and there is a great and urgent need for helping these people, I decided to start implementing my idea there. The first concert took place on March 31, 2018, at Parnassos Concert Hall and its proceeds were donated to "The Home Project", to buy instruments and pay for music teachers for the children sheltered by this charity organization.
For this first concert, I cooperated with the charity organization "Panos &Cressida 4 Life" that focuses its philanthropic actions on helping children in need. The program of the concert was very diverse, incorporating music styles ranging from classical music to jazz and Greek traditional songs. The purpose of entangling different kinds of music was to show that diversity in art and beyond can unite the world. The artists I invited, also with the help of my teachers, were talented, young, professional and non-professionals musicians. I also played guitar in this concert. Furthermore, we approached sponsors who supported this effort by contributing in-kind to the concert but also to "The Home Project" (for example, offering food supplies). Eventually, the concert turned out to be a great success: 380 tickets were purchased and about € 8,000 were raised while the audience was overwhelmed with the performances. The concert revenues were invested to purchase 1 piano, 5 guitars, 2 flutes, 1 violin and pay for 2 music teachers for one year. These instruments were placed in a special room dedicated to music, in one of the homes of "The Home Project" in the centre of Athens where the children will be practicing and having music lessons. I am also planning to volunteer by giving guitar lessons to these children in the time periods that I will be in Greece.
A chain of other concerts will follow, in Greece or Switzerland, for the purpose of helping young refugees through music. The next concert is scheduled for February 2019 and the details will be published soon.