HELP Vega Baja is a registered charity established over 40 years ago. Our aim is to support people in need and other likeminded charities. In “normal” times we offer several services in addition to the day-to-day advice and information we provide, which includes various friendship groups, support groups, talks and befriending service. Sadly, these have had to be put on hold until we receive the go ahead from the government.
From our office in San Miguel and helpdesk in La Marina we cover the Vega Baja area from La Marina down to Pilar de Horadada through to Orihuela inland. We also help people from further afield when this can be done either by phone or email.
Our San Miguel Centre is also where we have our charity shop and mobility equipment hire. We also offer a membership to the charity for just 10 euros a year which can be applied for online at our website, www.helpvegabaja.com or at either of our offices. This provides numerous discounts and free services from local organisations such as Quiron Salud Hospital who offer our members annual blood analysis, dental clean etc. Other benefits include 150 euros per annum free interpreter service which is a popular benefit for those attending their local doctor, hospital etc.
Over the years we have done everything we can to support people and – as an example, when the floods hit the Vega Baja area in 2019, our charity donated more than 76,000 euros and much of this was directed towards those most affected by the flood disaster.
For us to remain in a position to support people we depend heavily on our volunteers, local businesses, and other supporters.
Fundraising events, sales from our shop and a market stall at Campoamor, usually bring in funds that we can then pass on to families experiencing difficult times. However, because of the Covid pandemic, our stall at the market has had to close, fundraising events are not permitted and sells in our shop have decreased considerably due to people (quite rightly) staying home.
The shop is now currently open on a Wednesday only to save costs on utilities etc. This has, and continues to have, a significant impact on the charity. Three floods in two weeks and identification of rising damp has also left many volunteers feeling downhearted but as we always do here at HELP Vega Baja, we are all soldiering on!
Our Elective Committee continues to work from home, and we are dealing with a huge increase in the requests for support from families affected from the pandemic with loss of work, many of whom are in debt for rent and utilities and with little hope of work soon. We offer food vouchers where possible to ensure that nobody goes without food (we have discovered several families who have been doing what they can to meet their commitments by missing meals).
One of the most important things that we have been doing is to inform people of initiatives as they are released that they may apply for and of course, having honest conversations about their future here in Spain where this is needed.
Please don’t feel that life in our “charity world” is all doom and gloom currently! Yes, things are difficult (as they are for all charities), but this is a time when we all pull together and I know that our supporters, many of whom have been with us for many years, will do what they can to help us as we go through our lean times to ensure that we can in turn help others who otherwise would have nowhere to turn.
As President, I am in a fortunate position that I can make that call to families when we are able to offer support and believe me the appreciation and relief that I hear is worth every additional hour we spend.
If you would like to support HELP Vega Baja by offering a donation, perhaps a standing order, however small, every cent will help us continue our work. Please visit our website at www.helpvegabaja.com for details of how you can support us or contact our San Miguel Centre by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
HELP Vega Baja – Helping people in the community for 41 years!