Evi Lazou is chairman of the A.C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation, which works in Greece and across the Hellenic world to help preserve the seas, people and culture. The independent family foundation gives grants and implements programmes to support its mission.
Having previously worked in marketing and operations Lazou is also founding partner and chairman of The People's Trust, an organisation that provides business development services and micro-funding to start-ups and small businesses in Greece. She also is one of partners of Greenwood Place, a community of strategic philanthropists.
What concerns you the most about our ocean crisis?
Marine pollution is everywhere. We used to think of the sea as pristine and limitless, immune to human harm, but nowadays the devastating impact of pollution on our seas has become one of the most pressing problems of our times. Microplastics are found in our food and single-use plastic is everywhere, even in places unexplored by humans.
What measures have you taken to help protect the oceans?
The A.C. Laskaridis Charitable Foundation works to clear the Mediterranean from marine litter and prevent future littering. Focusing on Greece, our projects include extensive shore cleanups, educational programs, citizen-science programs, awareness-raising activities, and working on projects for specific stakeholder groups, such as fishermen and people in the tourism sector. The Typhoon, the foundation’s 74-metre vessel, operates all year long, cleaning accessible and inaccessible shores and supporting research teams in identifying sources and patterns of marine litter.
What single, practical act would you ask the public to take to help protect our oceans?
With our modern lifestyle we are all part of the problem and with our daily decisions we can also play a role in solving it. I urge people to be aware of their own daily habits and to spread the message regarding the need to protect the planet, starting now. There is no time to waste.