• by: Babis, Janina Psaroudakis
  • recipient: The district of Sfakia, the prefecture of Chania, the Prime Minister of Greece, Relevant European authorities

Hello there,
We are living in the mountain village of Kallikratis, Sfakia, Crete, Greece. Maybe you know it, coming by either through the gorge,the Kalikratiani, maybe you came by the road, newly done with asphalt..
Maybe you are a friend, having spent time here with us. Maybe you have seen the name on a map. Its a village, 750 meter above sealevel, traditionally connected with the villages of Patsianos, Frangokastello, Vouvas and Argoules..
Its a village without water. People here carry water everyday,from the coastal villages of Patsianos, Frangokastello, an hours journey one way, for their animals and for the absolute basics of human survival. There are no bathrooms, no water closets for the people here. No water for washing themselves, let alone for gardens, well- no water-
It is true, the village is only inhabited in summer, when people come up with their animals and families, from May to November. We are just 3 houses inhabited in the winter, from November to May.. but in the winter, there is no problem with water, as every house has a cistern. In the summer though,  there is absolutely no water. And we are many families.. Amazingly, even in 2010, in Europe, there are still villages which have no water supply whatsoever..

Over the last decades few  attempts have been made to solve this problem... there is some water above the village, they call it the 'acrid water', not fit for drinking, a water full of heavy minerals.. but even that water has not found the way to the village. Sometimes now, a truck comes with some cubic meters of water, fills it in a cistern full of mud. The shepherds get it for their animals...

Its quite amazing, that Sfakia promotes itself as a tourist destination, its beaches, its famous Samaria gorge.. while at the same time its original inhabitants, like the people of Kallikratis, do not even have a drop of water, live in a village, where they have no water supply whatsoever.

Well, we went to all the relevant authorities to find a solution, and they dug up the acrid water some years ago... but no results whatsoever. So now, we decided to take it into our own hands.. we privately paid for a drilling for water here in Kallikratis.. we drilled for 4 days, from 25 to 28th of August, we all had such hopes...we went down to 150 meters, and we did not find any water in the end- but we did what we could do ourselves here..

Have a look at our blog, where the story is documented...at www.wildherbsofcrete.blogspot.com .
So, now we really need to get the authorities involved, we need to file a demand.... WATER FOR KALLIKRATIS must become a priority for the Sfakian region, for the prefecture of Chania... We do not ask much, no luxury, no swimmingpools, no parkingplaces, no aspalt, no cement walkways, no subsidies...not even drinking water.
we just ask for a final solution for a basic watersupply, basic human need, for Kallikratis, a village in Sfakia, Crete, Greece, Europe...

The villagers have started a local petition, and signatures are being signed every minute. This online petition will support their demand, and hopefully press the relevant authorities finally to take action, to finally solve this basic problem.

Thank you, for supporting the basic needs of a whole forgotten village with your signature

To: The district of Sfakia, the prefecture of Chania, to the constituency of Crete, to the Prime Minister and the President of the Greek Republic, to the Greek ministries of Agriculture, of Environment, of Tourism,  to relevant European authorities

Dear Madam, Sir
We, the undersigned, support the demand of the people in the Sfakian villages to finally bring an immediate and sustainable solution for the water supply to the villages of Kallikratis and Asfendou, Sfakia, Crete, Greece. 

The villages of Kallikratis and Asfendou, situated at 750m altitude in the district of Sfakia, province of Chania do not have any water supply. In Kallikratis, some 30 families are living during the summer months from April till December, the months when water becomes a problem, as private cisterns collecting the winter rainwater run out. Water is then daily carried privately on pickup trucks from the coastal villages, some 12 km away, covering an altitude difference of approximately 900 meters, for the animals and to serve for the most basic cooking needs of the families. 

Despite several attempts to attain attention, for decades this problem was ignored. The village and its development, or at least maintenance, never received any attention. Despite being situated on a fertile plateau, agriculture or even small scale gardening is impossible because of the lack of water. The reality is, that today, in 2010, the village of Kallikratis, Sfakia, Crete is devoid of the most basic human need, the need for water. A forgotten village, in the same district as the world-famous Samaria gorge, visited by some 6000 tourists daily. 

Lately, from August 25 till 28 2010, in a commonly and privately funded effort, it was attempted to drill for water in the village. Despite drilling to a depth of 150 meters, no water was found.

We  now demand, that immediate and concrete action is taken by the relevant local, regional, national authorities to supply water to the village of Kallikratis, Sfakia. This online petition supports the demand of the Sfakian people, who signed a local petition personally.

We thank you for taking the time to read and review our request and remain
Sincerely and hopefully yours
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