We provide financial support to help Brits in Spain get back on their feet.
John lives in rural Spain. He moved there from the West Country after his wife died and enjoyed the tranquillity and remoteness of the place when he was 57.
In the five years he lived there he made friends, learned the language, and made a new life for himself. He also found part-time work to keep him busy.
He also registered as an official resident in Spain.
He lived alone, looked after himself and stayed in touch with his family back home.
Only occasionally would he venture into the big town for shopping or errands.
One such visit included a visit to the doctor for his annual check-up. He returned to his village house later that day when he received a call from the surgery. Could he come back the following day – it was urgent.
The check-up had revealed a suspected tumour and they needed to do more tests to be certain what they were dealing with.
A worried John called friends and spoke to people in the village about it.
Despite the worry, he was confident that the public medical expertise at hand was as good as back home and he was in safe hands.
Unfortunately, he hadn’t reckoned with the bureaucracy and the local waiting list.
The doctors advised surgery to remove what was identified as a malignant tumour close to his spine. A date would be forthcoming for surgery.
Within weeks the damage caused to the spine left him with debilitating back pain and mobility issues and very soon after the diagnosis he was finding it very difficult to walk.
As an official resident, he was fully entitled to Spanish healthcare in addition to disability payments.
However, he had to wait nearly 6 months for the surgery and was unable to work.
His savings were soon depleted.
Local social services contacted the local British Consulate who referred the case to us.
We were able to pay for some medical items to allow him greater mobility as well as a modest sum to cover living and travel expenses to and from the hospital.
The surgery was a complete success and John was able to receive disability payments during his recovery.
He wrote to us afterward to say he was back to living a full life and to thanks us.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the help you have offered me. After having fallen ill with cancer I was in a very dark place and had no idea how I was going to pay for my living. I have been promised help from the Spanish social security system but they take an age to process the paperwork. I have received your first payment and it has enabled me to buy badly needed essentials. A heavyweight has been lifted from my shoulders.”
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