For millions of fortunate people around the world, Christmas was a time of joy, gifts, family and celebration. These five photos from Greece give a different perspective of how some people spent their Christmas.
Homeless and in the spirit
Greece is experiencing an increase in homelessness since plunging into its deep recession more than five years ago. Here, a homeless person has taken up residence in what appears to be an abandoned storefront— Christmas tree and all.
To Dance is to Live
A lone dancer emerges from a crowd of more than 700 elderly people who were afforded a free holiday meal, hosted by the City of Athens and paid for by Chicago’s Bousis Family. The annual event, organized to give a meal to the city’s most vulnerable people, is held in a gymnasium and includes food, beverage and music.
A Tree of Life
Students at an elementary school in Komotini, in northeastern Greece, erected a Christmas tree with food and donations they were asked to bring from home for the children from the area SOS Children’s Village.
A Tree of Life Vests
Volunteers working beaches of Lesvos on Christmas Day, waiting for arriving dinghies of refugees from neighboring Turkey got creative with left over life vests that are discarded and left on beaches as refugees arrive.
No Room at the Inn
Susan Sarandon spent Christmas Eve with a young Syrian mother and her 5-day old infant. In a blog post on The Huffington Post, she asked “Wasn’t Mary just a kid too when she and Joseph took to the road? So far, there is no manger for this Syrian baby, no room at the inn.”