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Consulate’s helping hand for the island’s older folk

THE British Consulate, along with Birmingham University, last week launched coverage in Tenerife of their support website for older and more vulnerable British residents.

The website, Support in Spain (www.supportinspain.info), contains useful information on how to get extra support and help on a wide range of topics, such as health care, disabled services and benefits, as well as a directory of local support organisations.

Helen Keating, British Vice-Consul in Santa Cruz, said: “It is exciting to see this website expanding into Tenerife, after a successful start in mainland Spain.”

“There is some incredible work, carried out by so many volunteers across the islands, to support foreign residents in need. As the Consulate cannot be in all areas at once, we hope that this website is a useful support tool for voluntary groups in their work, and for residents as well.”

“We have compiled the site in Spanish, as well as English, so that social workers, medical staff and Spanish-speaking friends can, for the first time, access information on English-speaking support available.”

Helen added: “Our message from the British Consulate to UK residents is clear: ‘Plan ahead for the future. Anyone can become vulnerable at any time, and it is better to be prepared.’”

Two well-attended afternoon events were held recently in Tenerife. In the North, the project was presented in the English Library, Puerto de la Cruz, while Adeje Cultural Centre hosted the South’s meeting the following day.

The meetings were led by Neil Hesketh, of the Support in Spain project, and Penny Gómez, Consular Officer for the British Consulate in Tenerife.

Attending the events was a wide variety of organisations providing support to British residents in Tenerife. These included: Fighting Against Cancer Tenerife, Asociación Española Contra el Cáncer, AMATE Breast Cancer Support, Lions Club, Callao Salvaje Community Church, El Arca de Noé, The English Library, Friends of Tenerife, All Saints Church, The British Games Club, Tenerife Family Church, SHE women’s support, House of Hope and Living Room.

The meetings were also an important opportunity for those present to meet with a Consulate representative, as well as network with other people, working with older and more vulnerable people in Tenerife.

The Support in Spain website is the result of a close

co-operation between the British Consulates in Southern Spain and the School of Social Policy, at the University of Birmingham.

The original project set out to research the issues facing older and vulnerable British people while living in Spain, and to suggest possible solutions to help prevent them becoming socially isolated in the future.

One of the study’s conclusions was the need to develop a website that included all the contact information of the different voluntary groups, and Spanish statutory authorities available locally, as well as helpful advice on common questions, such as how to secure extra social care, help for a disability, or assistance with paperwork in Spanish.

The project was funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The content of the website now covers the Costa del Sol, Almeria and the Canaries, where there are high numbers of British residents.

It is published in Spanish as well as English and has had over 35,000 visitors since it was launched.

 

Short URL: http://www.canarianweekly.com/?p=48632

Posted by on Jul 5 2019. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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