Interview of the month: Cyprus
Interview with the President of the Cyprus Meteorological Association (CYMETA), Chrystalla (Stalo) Papachristodoulou
— by the EMS Liaison Committee (EMS LC) —
EMS Liaison Committee (LC): If you were to describe your society in one sentence, what would you say?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: CYMETA was created to promote meteorology in collaboration with other EU and global organisations, to enhance relationships between colleagues and members, and to provide financial support to its members in difficult/urgent situations (e.g. health problems or death).
EMS LC: When was CYMETA founded?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: 13th December 1994.
EMS LC: What are the objectives of CYMETA?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: The objectives of CYMETA are given below:
- Cultivating and developing partnerships and tightening bonds between the members of the Association.
- Providing financial support to members and their families via a Joint Fund in urgent situations, and in general supporting the well-being of the members of the Association.
- Identifying problems and submitting suggestions for the improvement of the work and the workplace of the Association’s members.
- Promoting meteorology by organising lectures and seminars on meteorological topics in collaboration with other organisations.
- Membership of European or International Associations/Meteorological Organisations, in order to promote CYMET’s work and to develop relations with the Members of these Associations/Organizations.
EMS LC: Could you explain the structure of your membership?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: CYMETA consists of its members (which, apart from the staff of the Cyprus Department of Meteorology, can be any person with an interest in meteorology and under special circumstances, citizens of another country belonging to National Meteorological Associations/Companies) and the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors consists of five members: Chairperson, Vice-Chair, Secretary, Accountant and Public Relations Officer. The organisation of the various events of the Association is the responsibility of the Public Relations Officer.
EMS LC: What are CYMETA ‘s recent achievements?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: We have been successful in organising an annual school competition (running for the past 13 years) based on topics in meteorology and providing a financial award for the best projects. Also, we promote meteorology to school students by giving lectures about the science of meteorology and the impact of climate change when such opportunities arise, such as during the celebration of the World Meteorological Day. As well as supporting education in schools, CYMETA organises a Photography Competition based on meteorological/weather events and organises conferences or scientific meetings/collaborations with the help of the Cyprus Department of Meteorology and other countries’ meteorological organizations, including universities.
EMS LC: Where do you see the greatest challenges?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: We would like to collaborate with EMS Member Societies and other related organisations to launch a public awareness campaign urging actions to be taken about the impacts of climate change before it is too late. As a meteorological organisation I believe that we have the opportunity to communicate the negative impact of climate change in our lives and in the future. It is our duty to contribute to the climate change campaign. Politicians and decision makers must take the necessary measures to stop destroying our planet.
EMS LC: Which activities are you planning for the coming months?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: We are going to organise an event to plant trees in collaboration with the Forest Department Association and another event involving presentations related to the impact of climate change.
EMS LC: Are you collaborating with other EMS Members?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: Not so far.
EMS LC: What do you expect from the EMS? In what ways can it help you to develop your activities?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: We are looking forward to the EMS sharing their actions/activities with us and providing some guidelines on how the EMS works. If EMS Members have the know how for improving certain activities we will be happy to hear them. For instance, what are their objectives, what do they do, and how do they try to increase their membership and keep their members interested.
EMS LC: What have been your most successful events in the last three years?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: Similar things to our recent achievements.
EMS LC: What changes do you believe your society needs to make?
Stalo Papachristodoulou: We would like to start participating in more EMS meetings. In this way we would become more active and gain know how about procedures relevant to our Association’s objectives. Also some actions are required to attract more members.