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Support network for older and more vulnerable English speakers extends services to Catalonia

Project run by non-profit and British Embassy lists local resources for those in need

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10 March 2021 04:20 PM

by

Scarlett Reiners | Barcelona

‘Support in Spain’, a welfare resource run in collaboration with the British Embassy, has expanded its services to Catalonia. 

The initiative was launched in October 2017 by a British consulate in southern Spain and concluded that many vulnerable British residents in the Costa del Sol, a section of the coast south of Malaga, did not know where to seek help. The project then developed into a website with the ambition to create a new easily accessible online network of resources.

‘Support in Spain’ is now active in Catalonia, Murcia, the Costa Blanca, Almeria, the Canaries, Balearic islands and Costa del Sol, where the majority of Spain's 300,000 Brits reside. Around 35,000 of those live in Catalonia.

The website enables people to specifically search for support networks in their local town or village making it unlike a lot of other directories.

Moreover, while it lists English voluntary groups working in Spain, it also provides the contact points for local Spanish authorities often unknown to British residents, especially useful in Catalonia where there are fewer charities of this kind active in the area. 

The Support in Spain website is available in both English and Spanish in order to also make it open to local carers, voluntary groups, friends and neighbours seeking help on behalf of an English-speaker in Spain. 

While the mission’s geographical expansion is now complete, it is still in the process of finding a widening variety of welfare resources to add to its growing network. Initially pitched at the over-50s, increasingly organizations aimed at helping younger people, such as those providing support around residency, drug abuse and housing, are continuously being listed in the online directory. 

The ‘Support in Spain’ website can be found at: https://www.supportinspain.info/ 

Another useful resource is Age in Spain: https://www.ageinspain.org/, a non-profit charity organization based in Mallorca with a huge presence across Catalonia. They provide free English-language services and support, especially for older people, ensuring that English speakers can be well informed on their rights and the benefits they are entitled to. 

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  • A home care worker takes care of an elderly person in a wheelchair (by Eloi Tost)

  • A home care worker takes care of an elderly person in a wheelchair (by Eloi Tost)

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