One neighborhood, a lot of stories – 3rd Primary School of Thessaloniki, Greece

The 5th graders of the two classes of the 3rd Primary School of Thessaloniki, after being informed about what exactly NEMESIS is and what it entails, decided to implement their project entitled “One neighbourhood, a lot of stories”.

Several hours of discussion and recording of the neighbourhood problems followed, showing the intense concern and observation of the children about what happens every day in their neighbourhood, as well as their strong willingness to contribute to a positive change. What was impressive was the plethora of ideas and their willingness to make them a reality.

Under the supervision of the teachers, the children themselves decided to carry out the following activities:

The first class (E1) undertook to collect, digitally record and then translate into English information about the area’s streets. It is a fact that students make short daily trips from home to school or other places in their neighbourhood. They may have crossed a street countless times, knowing its name, but never wondered, up until today, how and why it got its name. Now, they are motivated as, thanks to NEMESIS, they will be able to search for and listen to the stories behind the street names which are part of their neighbourhood and are near their home and school. As part of this process, they will create stickers where all this information will be captured in the form of QR codes and will be posted in various parts of the neighbourhood by the children accompanied by their parents. In this way, anyone who wishes can easily scan the code with a mobile phone to obtain the information that will be provided.

The second class (E2) decided to write stories related to their neighbourhood that they have either heard from their grandparents and parents or will write them themselves. Then the stories will be illustrated with the help of the Visual Arts teacher and will be translated into English. Finally, an audiobook will be created that will be available at the Municipal Children’s Library of the neighbourhood in order to benefit as many children as possible as well as children with visual impairments and other difficulties.

Even though the Covid-19 pandemic has provided a lot of restrictions to schools and most importantly to teachers and students, it has thus not constrained their willingness and desire to improve their neighbourhood and collectively work towards bringing social value to their mission by telling all the untold stories of their neighbourhood reinforcing in this way the city’s culture.

Digital Co-creation Lab during lock down – Intercultural High School of Thessaloniki

On 30/11/2020 and during the Coronavirus lockdown in Greece, the Intercultural High School of Thessaloniki organized a digital co-creation lab. Teachers, students, SIPs and community members participated with the aim to reactivate the plans of students for improving their school that were interrupted due to the previous lockdown in Spring. 

Although the school is still closed, participants discussed their ideas for improving their school and raising awareness in the local community about the difficulties they face due to the lack of appropriate school infrastructures. 

By implementing the 5Ws exercise of the NEMESIS resource bank, students and teachers presented their firsts thoughts about their project idea and why it is important, who will be involved and who it will affect; as well as where and when it will happen. 

One of the teachers, Efi Damptsi, had invited in the co-creation lab Aris Chatzinikolaou. Aris is a SIP and he is leading the work of the Environmental Team of the university of Macedonia. Aris presented the various actions that the Environmental team of the university have done to make the inner and outer space of the university more environmentally friendly and thus inspire students about their social innovation project in their school. 

Participants stressed that they need to make big efforts to improve the school as both the building and the schoolyard has many problems – both aesthetic and operational. In this process, it was evident that they will need help and support from different people in the town. 

Alex Theodoridis, a SIP who is running the food waste NGO Boroume, suggested to the team to start by creating a video showing the problems in the school and students plans for improvement and share it with the local authorities and local community. In this way, students will be able to ask for the support of many different actors in their city. Alex mentioned that are many people out there who are ready to help. Teachers were very enthusiastic with this idea saying that it will be a great opportunity for making students voice heard.

Finally, participants said that their next steps are to make clear plans and as soon schools open to go into their school and create a video with all the problematic things that need improvement. In parallel, they will think about the skills they miss and the people they will need for fulfilling their goals. Aris mentioned that the environmental team of the University will be happy to help!

The co-lab meeting closed with a promise to keep the spirit up despite this extremely difficult period we are all undergoing.

‘Cultivating on Mars’ – Minority School of Dokos, Greece

Minority School of Dokos is one of the Greek schools participating in the second NEMESIS piloting period. Dokos is a small village located in Rodopi in Northern Greece, with the largest percentage of its inhabitants (around 1030 in total) being rural families working on the production of tobacco and cotton seedlings. Given the general socio-economic situation of the village, 3rd and 4th grade students wanted to examine and learn more on the cultivation and production of goods, starting from the early years until today, in order to think about how these could be formed in the future.

During this endeavour, the ultimate goal of their teacher, Mrs. Vasiliki Psaridou, was, on the one hand, to teach the Greek language to her students and on the other hand, to teach them possible alternative ways of connecting agricultural work using ICT in order to open their perspectives and see things with a different eye. Therefore, in close collaboration with both students and their parents, she felt the need to incorporate a more “playful” and interactive way to achieve this.

They began their quest by reading the European Union’s publication “Three Generations of Farmers” and leading students on a journey of knowledge covering the stories of three generations of farmers and the experiences they have gained over the past 50 years. This activity helped them better understand the difficult path that families have followed, the risks they were forced to take but also the support and incentives provided by the EU. 

Parents of students have been a very important part of this endeavour. They have searched for photographic material and found photos of farmers in the village during the 60s and the 70s, which they shared with the teacher. Students were thus given the opportunity to see how villagers had cultivated their crops, the tools they used in the old days, as well as discuss further the evolvement of crops throughout the years.

On top of that, one of the student’s grandfather also wanted to add his own touch by making a miniature of a plow like the one he was using when he was a young farmer. 

 They then started looking into the present trying to understand the role but also the importance of farmers and agriculture for the future of the rural community as well as the opportunities that exist and could be exploited. They started by planting organic plants, seeing how they will grow after carefully taking care of them on a daily basis.

The closure of schools, however, did not stop them from doing things for their project. During distance learning courses, their teacher prepared an ebook giving them instructions on how, together with their parents and the local shops that have provided them with all the necessary materials, to take advantage of their free time and to build a rocket from recyclable materials. Students did not lose touch with their project and managed to adapt their idea using recyclable materials instead of robotic tools. 

According to Mrs. Vasiliki, NEMESIS gave her students the opportunity to look and study different things, to understand what suits them best and how far they could go to achieve it. Through their work with the project “Cultivating on Mars”, the 13 children of the 3rd and 4th grade managed to combine, to the extent that the conditions allowed them until the closing of schools, in an alternative way computer science and robotics, which as subjects are not taught in the Minority School. 

More from this school remains to be seen from September 2020 onwards. 



We give Love! – Olynthos Primary School, Greece

During a unique day of solidarity and giving, Olynthos Primary School in Greece donated produce from their vegetable garden to the Social Grocery of the Municipality of Propontida as part of their NEMESIS project.

With the help of their teachers, the students with professional experience cut, cleaned, washed and then placed their organic products in boxes ready for delivery.

The representative of the Municipality and Head of the Social Grocery Mrs. Kalimeri Mona attended the event. She talked to the students about the value of solidarity and giving, and after thanking the students, received the “goodies” to share with the families of the Social Grocery during the Christmas distribution.

The president of the local community, Mr. Avgeris, also attended and spoke to the students. He made a special mention of the value of our vegetable gardens and the hands-on learning that the school offers through its actions.

“The value of these products you see is priceless! Because we give our students the opportunity to develop practical skills and to learn to work together, but at the same time to acquire knowledge of the natural sciences, the wealth of our country…. Love and offer are the messages of this day, because today we express our love for our fellow man, for all our fellow citizens who are affected by the financial and social crisis that affects our country and are deprived of even the necessary things”

– Headmaster, Olynthos Primary School

This NEMESIS school demonstrates its experiential character and openness to the local community through the initiatives and efforts made by everyone. We look forward to learning more about their social innovation projects.



Blog post on school website 

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Let me tell you a story II – Eleftherio Kordelio School

Click here to read the previous post.

Last year, 2 teachers (Kiriaki Zervou and Artemis Kefalidou) and 48 students from the 6th Intercultural Primary school of Eleftherio-Kordelio (Greece) joined Nemesis and kicked off a project called “Let me tell you a Story”.

The project was conceived by students during participatory activities that they carried out together with teachers, parents and community stakeholders as a means to tackle loneliness and isolation. The young change-makers decided to write stories. They decided they would read these stories to people to make them feel less lonely, becoming volunteer readers in hospitals, elderly care centers, and for individuals with illiteracy, visual impairment, and other disabilities. They also came up with the idea of creating a “Friendship Bench” as a symbol of their work. They wanted it to serve as a place where their stories would be read aloud and made available to every person feeling lonely. With a concrete plan for the project, previous year students went through different stages to design all the details of their ambitious project. They went through self-reflective training and researched the subject of loneliness to develop a deep understanding of what it really means to feel isolated. They also planned and designed a host of activities. Students wrote their own stories and produced various drawings of benches as well as a 3D-printed bench prototype using the school’s computer lab. On top of this, they managed to get a grant from a supermarket chain to buy real benches.

This year, their mission is to take action fast by building the friendship benches in real dimensions and beginning their visits to nursing homes, orphanages, children’s hospitals, etc. so as to share their stories and offer companionship, compassion, and happiness to people who really need it.

The co-creation lab this year to help develop the project, then, was launched with Efi Papadopoulou. As a local Social Innovation practitioner who uses the power of art to bring people together and foster social inclusion, he was a perfect match for the project. Efi joined the NEMESIS lab and together with students and teachers discussed the different techniques they can apply to paint and decorate the benches.

They also exchanged ideas about creating a special place under the benches for storing all the stories written by students. The next meeting of the co-creation lab has already been fixed and the transformation of the benches is ready to start.

Last but not least, future plans include inviting the NGO “Reading for the Others” to the co-creation lab, to help the young change-makers realize their mission through practical tips and guidance!

Stay tuned…. more updates are coming soon!


Visit the school webpage

Thessaloniki, Greece

Number of students
48 primary students

SIPs involved

Do you want to contact this school? Write to nickaman4[at]

Oxygen for all! (II) – Eleftherio-Kordelio School

Stench…Oxygen for us, for you, for all of us!


Our school, the 6th Intercultural Elementary School of Eleftherio-Kordelio Thessaloniki, is located next to the industrial area of Western Thessaloniki.

Air pollution has reached levels that create unwanted living conditions and especially stench.

Gas, petroleum and other toxic odours are being inhaled daily by the citizens. The situation has become tragic as it impacts seriously on the health of citizens… Many citizens have reported discomfort, breathing problems, and tingling of their eyes. They cannot sleep at night!

The children have decided to undertake a series of awareness-raising activities on the critical problem of environmental pollution and odors in Eleftherio-Kordelio.


  1. Making posters and displaying them in central locations in the city. Children want to send out a loud message through the magic of painting to highlight the serious problem of environmental pollution.
  2. Posting messages on tree branches in the public spaces of our Municipality.“No more pollution! We cannot stand it! Do Something!”, “We Suffer! Help!”,”We cannot even open the windows in our classrooms!”
  3. Protest at the factories. We daily inhale the black-and-yellow smoke that is released from the factories and comes to us from the windows of the halls of our school. Anger pushes all children to raise their voices together and to gather united outside the factories in the region.
  4. Environmental traffic wardens. The children take on the role of a local environmental police force that aims to raise awareness amongst the public on issues of respect for daily travel on the streets of the area.


  • Virtual fines (tabs with feelings, tips, prompts, etc.) on vehicles that prevent pedestrian traffic in order to reduce the use of cars for daily journeys.


  1. Zumba in Kordelio, I have the right to breathe and live. Teachers and students study modern choreography by wearing medical masks in order to communicate the right to live and take exercise in a healthy urban environment.


  • Choreography with medical masks and participation in environmental actions of our Municipality.


Whatever we do, we do it with our hearts!


The relevant video


Understanding the visual impaired (II) – Thessaloniki School

The students of 1st Experimental Primary School of Thessaloniki took action! In the context of the project “Learning experience with persons with visual impairment,” a group of children in the fifth grade decided to create a stop motion movie, in order to emphasize the daily difficulties of people with visual impairment, to raise awareness among the local community and to challenge the inadequate facilities of the city council.

Furthermore, students in sixth grade decided to hold interviews with people with visual impairments who were living locally in order to find out what specifically could be done to help these people. This information that they gained from this could help the children see what they had to do to improve the situation of the visually impaired in their area. The student groups organized a visit to “School for the Blind”.

In the interviews, the children asked questions regarding the teaching methods used, or the Braille method as it is known. They asked about the special technical equipment and the daily transportation difficulties. Moreover, the children also interviewed the teachers there to ask for other information which they felt was relevant. The visit to “School of the Blind” was carried out in a friendly and amicable way. Students were given a book written in Braille as a gift for their visit. It was a unique experience for all of us, students and teachers alike.


Kyriakou Maria
Lazaridou Paraskevi

Oxygen for all! – Eleftherio-Kordelio School

Located in Thessaloniki, 6th Primary School of Eleftherio-Kordelio is an intercultural school which consists of roughly 290 students of multicultural backgrounds with a strong desire to make the world a better place. This is their second NEMESIS project (see the other one here).

The school is located in an industrial area in Western Thessaloniki. Here, air pollution has reached very high levels. Gas, petroleum and other toxic odours are being inhaled daily by citizens. Stench is common. The pollution levels have become so high that they are seriously impacting the health of citizens, many of whom have reported discomfort, breathing problems, eye tingling and difficulty sleeping.

Given the above, students quickly decided that this is a topic they wanted to address, as it affects their daily lives. They want others to hear their concerns and join them in their mission. Consequently, they have already taken action, including making posters to be displayed around the city, protesting at the local factories and participating in environmental activity with other collectives.

They are also planning to address the pollution emitted from vehicles, since there is heavy traffic in the area. They will take on the role of “environmental traffic warden”, issuing “well being” fines with tips on how to reduce traffic.


Go to the school webpage

Thessaloniki (Greece)

Number of students
25 children of the 6th grade of the school (11-12 years old)

Members of co-creation lab

Do you want to contact this school? Write to nickaman4[at]

Four problems students can solve through social innovation – Thessaloniki

The main goal of NEMESIS is to change the children’s experience inside the school. They are the most important audience in this project since they are the main subjects of NEMESIS’ work. After a first period focused on turning ideas into a cohesive theoretical framework, the second period is bringing these ideas into action. The social innovation process becomes real when we give the children the opportunity to help people, making their voice heard, and working on projects chosen by themselves, which appears to be the biggest motivation for them to join (and enjoy) the project.

The 14th General High School of Thessaloniki (Greece) is a secondary educational school, with 30 teachers and 324 students. There is a low migrant population in the area and medium unemployment. The school is engaged in innovative teaching. They use e-learning platforms such as and Moodle. They create blogs and wikis and use Web 2.0 tools in teaching such as Kubbu, Socrative, Prezi, Sway, Mindomo, etc. The school also participates in Young Business talents programme.

At the Thessaloniki School there is a group of 15-16-year-old students participating in the NEMESIS programme. After school, students chose to deal with issues they encounter in their everyday life and to find solutions by applying new ideas and suggestions. They worked on two main topics: restored and abandoned buildings and vulnerable groups of the population.

 – The first group of students noted abandoned buildings in the neighbourhood and identified one that needed restoration. They took the responsibility for solving the problem by sending emails and calling 80 different construction companies in order to find sponsors. However,  there was a legal problem, because a school cannot be responsible for such a project and there was nobody willing to help.

 – The second group talked to the parental association of children with neoplastic illnesses called “Blink”. They organized a day at school to inform all students about becoming bone marrow and platelet donors when they become adults. Also, they participated as volunteers in a downtown area to inform passers-by, distributing flyers and balloons about the topic.

– Another team made a record of all the schools and public buildings in the area in terms of their accessibility for people with mobility problems. They continue now with a collection of the dining and entertainment venues in the same framework. A meeting with the NGO “Action for something else”, which deals with people with mobility problems, was arranged.

– The last team contacted the “Sierios” Center for the Prevention of Addictions and Promotion of Μental Health. They are to organize a group therapy workshop at school.

The Thessaloniki project is a perfect example of how different types of learning scenarios shape the NEMESIS model. As is seen, social innovation can address many fields and helps to put the students at the centre of education, developing their passion for social change.

Do you want to contact this school? Write to nickaman4[at]

Let me tell you a story – Eleftherio-Kordelio School

Located in Thessaloniki, 6th Primary School of Eleftherio-Kordelio is an intercultural school which consists of roughly 290 students of multicultural backgrounds with a string willingness for making the world a better place.

However, willingness is not enough. Willingness needs to be channelled, directed towards an unique common goal. While using some of the techniques to spark the discussion on what they really wanted to do, students and teachers at Kordelio starting sharing their stories; and while doing so, they realised sharing stories made them feel better, less lonely and more connected. An idea took form, a method for respond to the loneliness and isolation we all sometimes felt, especially those who are facing difficulties in their daily life: sharing stories.

Those stories are sometime real, sometimes fictional, but they all have something in common: the emotions they convey are real. They capture our anxieties, dreams, and expectations; and everything else that worries or awes us. By being shared, they help alleviate our suffering and connect us with others, creating a much needed connection and sense of belonging.

So off they went, all 48 students of D1 and E2 classes, their teachers Mrs Artemis Kefalidou and Mrs Kiki Zervou, and NEMESIS partners Alex and STIMMULI. Off they went to create stories and devise forms and places to share them. Actually, children will create a digital libraries for theses stories, so everybody can read them.

However, the real challenge will be to create and craft a physical space for these stories to be shared. For starters, they are working towards playground benches, thematic benches that will be the reference point for all those who need to temporarily escape their reality and experience the feelings of joy, companionship, friendship, solidarity expressed by stories. Students also envision and similar place to be located in nursing homes, orphanages, children’s hospitals, etc.

Visit the school webpage

Thessaloniki, Greece

Number of students
48 primary students

SIPs involved


Do you want to contact this school? Write to nickaman4[at]

Understanding the visually impaired – Thessaloniki School

Located in the Agia Triada neighbourhood, 1st Experimental Primary School of Thessaloniki sits very close to Helios School, a facility for blind kids. So close that they even organised shared music lessons for their students. It was therefore no surprise that, when asked to think about problems in their neighbourhood, their attention quickly shifted to the difficulties of visually impaired people.

Once the topic was clear, teachers and students – together with our SIP Alex, from Boroume – started thinking about how they could help. However, they did not want to take action right away: they felt they needed to understand visually impaired people and empathize with the difficulties they experience in their daily lives.

They therefore decided on different activities depending on their age. Some resorted to literature, cinema, and arts to learn about other’s experiences; while others took walks around the area and noticed all difficulties that disabled people faced there. As part of the latter, they noticed how many road crossings did not have facilities for blind people to use them, and they saw how car owners sometimes parked on or too close to wheelchair ramps. The pupils then started working together with the Helios School students, learning Braille and playing sports together (goalball, a sport specially designed for blind and visually impaired people).

Children guiding others during an empathy exercise in the 1st Experimental School of Thessaloniki

The project is now moving onto the stage of planning actual interventions. Students are currently preparing themselves to interview disable people in the neighbourhood in order to understand how they cope with problems and what would they would need to improve the quality of life. They plan to make real life observation and intend to map the problematic points of the area. In addition to this, they are creating an informative campaign which will be put into practice on open market day. They hope that this will raise awareness among other neighbours and community members.



Visit the school web

Visit the school’s blog on the project

Thessaloniki, Greece

Number of students
110 students from 6 to 12 years old

SIPs involved


Do you want to contact with this school? Write to nickaman4[at]