There are so many charities now doing good work in the area, but with many of them overlapping on the services that they offer, the people that they target and the support that they provide.
As such, at the beginning of the year, Michele Masson, the President of HELP Vega Baja, set up the CARE group (Communication and Resource Exchange), which brings together the presidents and other volunteers from the majority of local charities to work together for the benefit of the community.
The group meets on a regular basis, the most recent of which, involving more than a dozen local charities, took place on Friday at the QuirónSalud Hospital in Torrevieja.
The Royal British Legion were attending the meeting for the very first time so Welfare Officer Sandie Coates explained the role of the charity. Whilst identifying the variety of Veterans able to access their assistance, she was also able to answer questions regarding funding and the Poppy Appeal.
Michele explained that there is now an accredited “Huntington’s Disease Association” on the Costa Blanca, for people involved directly or indirectly with Huntington’s disease. Contact details are Marion Smith, Tel:0034 634 905 249 or email email@example.com
The Elderly Isolation Project was discussed, highlighting the Residential Care Organisation Savia, which operates some 22 care homes It was noted that the Savia home in Villa Martin particularly welcome people who wish to have short term respite only.
Information was shared between the agencies represented on the need for a cohesive strategy for raising awareness of need for volunteers and services offered. Subjects discussed were recruitment ideas, further networking strategies, focussing on statutory agencies & churches.
Vega Baja covers a large geographical area and would like to recruit a volunteer in each small area to provide feedback of need to central office. These ideas are hoped to reduce the isolation many elderly people experience.
A Facebook group has also been commenced, however this is a closed group in order to ensure confidentiality. Membership and benefit of this was explained.
Dependency Law was discussed, funding from UK implications plus the whole process and timescales. Yet again, concerns were raised that applications for assessment of disability take so long.
The meeting of Presidents and Vice Presidents which is held annually at the Civic Centre, Quesada was suggested as a good way to promote agencies by leaving leaflets and information. Every Town Hall has a “foreigners rep”, and the charities were encouraged to seek them out, and give agency information direct to improve networking and knowledge.
More information on the group is available from Michele Masson by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org