«In 1981 the situation in Greece for people with intellectual disability was very difficult and their parents were in despair. The Greek society excluded people with intellectual disability and did not promote equal opportunities for a decent life. The parents were in agony for the future of their disabled children and they were scared of a situation similar to the Mental Health Institution in Leros or “Kostalexi”. They were though some positive efforts from some associations like Theotokos, Psychological Centre of North Greece, PEGAP, EGNYA etc. I had a daughter affected by Down syndrome. Her name was Maria and I loved her. She used to feel safe with me but I was angry with myself because I was expecting solutions from the State. Over the time, I contained my anger and started to think about my input in this situation that concerned many other parents like me. I would set up a SCHOOL. A school which would celebrate diversity and would promote love and respect for people with intellectual disability. 

May 1981. I spoke to other parents who believed in my vision and with the support of family members and friends the articles of our future association were finally printed on a paper. Our goal was to support people with intellectual disability to have a good quality of life. Our service users have access to education and training, social inclusion, supported employment and living which are the main ingredients for a decent life. ESTIA has been an Association since February 1982.»

Efi Prokopaki

President of ESTIA

An Association was set up as Centre of Social Care of people with intellectual disability, named ESTIA in
New Psychiko in 13 Sonias Nikolakopoulou Street supervised by the Ministry of Labour and Social Solidarity.

The objective of ESTIA is to provide support to people with intellectual disability and access in
education, supported employment, supported living and social inclusion.
Our committee (Psychiatrist, Psychologist, Social worker and Occupational therapist) assess and
proceeds with the requests of people with intellectual disability to participate in our programs.

In order to view the articles of ESTIA, click Here.