Niki-Eleni Nomidou, the mother of a boy challenged with schizophrenia for more than 30 years, has a firsthand experience of the problems faced by families trying to cope with mental-illness related issues and the unfairness of the situation patients find themselves in. This prompted her to become actively involved in the mental health issues that affect society as a whole. She helped people identify the vision they had but didn’t know they had, she helped them overcome feelings of ‘’shame’’ and ‘’guiltiness’’ and the mental health association SOFPSI N.SERRON emerged out of this shared passion.
Her inexhaustible passion, fervent enthusiasm, imaginative nature, pioneering actions and principled behavior evolved in pride in the association; inspired volunteers; created meaning in mental health service users’ and their families’ lives; inspired the community to grow against stigma through internal motivation, rather than just being told to change. Centralizing by mission and decentralizing by operations, relating constructively to everyone, embracing change but most of all being characterized by capacity, credibility and commitment expressed forcefully, energetically and passionately to something bigger than herself, is what inspires persistence among her followers in doing more than they could have imagined possible to achieve SOFPSI’s vision. Niki-Eleni Nomidou, rewarded twice by the Greek Ministry of Health and Social Solidarity, will be handed by the European Projects Association the "2014 Award for outstanding achievements in development of the EU through European Projects" in recognition of her efforts in building a better society.