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Souda Animal Shelter

by gafoundation1

Why this initiative?

From Gregory C. Pappas, President & Founder

For years, I’ve watched and admired the work of this animal shelter outside of Hania, Crete, which happens to be the same place where both of my parents were born and raised. As both a passionate Cretan and animal welfare supporter, I decided to launch a fundraising initiative and “adoption” program through the Greek America Foundation which will not only directly benefit hundreds of abandoned and vulnerable animals in need, but also support the locals in Crete who dedicate their time, talent and resources to caring for these animals. 

About Souda Shelter

The Souda Shelter is an animal welfare facility outside the city of Hania on the Greek island of Crete. The shelter currently houses more than 85 dogs, many of which were abandoned by their owners or found in garbage bins as newborn puppies.

Souda Shelter is currently run by Elizabeth Iliakis, a dedicated animal welfare volunteer who has built a safe place where abandoned and stray dogs are nurtured and eventually adopted out to forever homes. 

Elizabeth and her team of staff and volunteers run a transparent operation and implement U.S.-standard best practices in their care, treatment and rehabilitation of animals. This includes mental stimulation, routine veterinary check ups, drainage systems for waste, consultations with specialists pertaining to animal handling and behavior.

Since taking over the shelter in 2016, Elizabeth and her team have saved hundreds of stray, abandoned, abused or otherwise vulnerable animals in the broader region around Hania. Elizabeth not only makes the effort to connect with each animal personally, but she also makes it a goal to improve their lives and re-home them.

Souda Shelter Founder Elizabeth Iliakis

How we support the shelter

Our “adoption” includes the creation of an ongoing fund for U.S. donors to be able to earmark donations specifically to the Souda Shelter and receive a tax deduction, as well as the development of a potential future volunteer program for North American animal lovers to support the efforts of the shelter through a structured volunteer program.

Throughout the year we will also initiate various mini-campaigns, highlighting stories of the animals at the shelter and bringing attention to the important work being done there to provide a safe place for vulnerable animals.

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Donate to our Souda Shelter Fund

Adoption stories

Meet some of Souda Shelter’s wonderful animals who have successfully found a “forever home” with loving owners in Crete and beyond.


Zouzou (now Hebe) was born in August 2018 and she now lives in Hania.


Eleni (now Argyro) was born in October 2019 and she now lives in Germany.


Jordan was born in May 2020 and he now lives in London, England.


Lulu was born in June 2020 and she now lives in Hania.


Duke was born in November 2019 and he now lives in the Netherlands.

See the shelter in video

Support Souda Shelter!

November 2021 Fundraiser

Three puppies were dumped and abandoned by humans at Elafonisi Beach near Chania. Fortunately, the Souda Shelter was contacted and the pups were immediately rescued. They are now safe at the shelter and will immediately undergo the necessary medical treatment, micro-chipping, medicine, vaccinations and other exams to prepare them for adoption. 

Each puppy will need about €500 in expenses to make sure they’re healthy to become someone’s forever pet. The Greek America Foundation is seeking donations on behalf of the Souda Shelter to support this initiative. Make your tax-deductible donation today.