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More Cypriots seek help from charities

26 February, 2014

More Cypriots live in poverty today than in the period November 2013 to January 2014, according to the Commissioner for Volunteering Yiannis Yiannaki, who said that 13,000 families are supported by charity organizations.

“We are talking about 45,000 persons who receive assistance from volunteer organizations in order to make ends meet. This includes some 13,000 minors,” he told CNA today.

He noted that the number of those in need stabilized from November last year to January this year but subsequently there has been an increasing trend, and today an additional 500 families need help, most of them in the capital Nicosia.

Replying to questions, Yiannaki said there is uncertainty in the coming months as a result of increasing unemployment.

“Unemployment figures go hand in hand with the number of people who need support. As more people are out of work, more will need help,” he explained.

He said the public at large continues to offer whatever they can, so do private companies but they ask that help is more targeted and better coordinated.

“At present, we are trying to create a programme and a uniform document which people applying for assistance can fill in with their details for consideration. This, we believe, will improve the concerted effort made by many volunteer organizations,” he explained.

Following the near collapse of the country’s economy in March 2013, many people have found themselves out of work and in need of support from the state and charity organizations. As unemployment rose to unprecedented levels, even more people have come forward asking for assistance in the past several months.