Ioanna Nissiriou is the founder of We Need Books. She recognizes that cultural and linguistic diversity is the common heritage of humanity and is everyone’s duty to protect and maintain it. Ioanna was born and raised in Athens, in 1996 she moved to UK for studies in Film at Staffordshire, Warwick and Canterbury Christ Church universities. Ioanna worked in London in the film production industry until 2004. Upon her return to Greece, she worked in film production in Le Spot and from 2010 until 2016, she worked as a producer and eventually head of production in MTV and Nickelodeon channels. Ioanna is highly organized, driven, resourceful, conscientious, tireless and dedicated.
It has been longer than a decade that Ioanna has been involved with volunteerism and social projects. In 2010, she co-founded the NGO, A Seed for Change, the main goal was the preservation of heirloom seeds and biodiversity. When the refugee crisis erupted in 2015, she applied herself to finding practical solutions to help improve the living conditions of refugees in Greece. In 2016, she and her co-founder started the We Need Books as a private initiative, and in 2017 We Need Books was officially registered as an NGO.
““Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
Nadir Noori is the co-founder of We Need Books. His multifaceted experience with the refugee crisis, his language skills, his hard work and endless optimism was part of the conception of We Need Books.
In 1996, at the age of twelve, Nadir left his native country, Afghanistan, as an unaccompanied minor. In 2003, he managed to reach Greece, where he applied for asylum. In 2016, he gained his high school diploma by the “Agion Anargyron” Second Chance School. He has attended numerous trainings in regards with Politics, Economics, International Relations and Mental Health. Nadir is fluent in Greek, Farsi, Dari, Hazaragi (Dari dialect) and English. Since 2010, he has been working as a translator, intercultural mediator and community worker mainly for UNHCR and various NGOs, accumulating significant experience and offering invaluable support to refugees. Nadir, because of his qualifications and background, played an important role in the management of the refugee crisis during the period 2015 – 2017.
Nadir understands firsthand the value of education, easy access to educational material, and the importance of refugees and migrants learning Greek and English. Currently, he is fully committed to the cause of We Need Books.