IN THE HEART OF the Vega Baja lies a charity that has become a cornerstone of the community. Help Vega Baja, a registered charity in the Valencian Community, has been serving the area for more than four decades with a mission to support and assist those in need.
Asociacion Help Vega Baja was established more than 45 years ago with a vision to address the various needs of the local community and expatriates living in the region.
Over the years, it has grown significantly, adapting to the changing needs of the community it serves. This growth has been fuelled by the dedication of a team of volunteers and the generosity of donors.
The charity's services are multifaceted, designed to cater to a wide range of needs, and completely free of charge at the point of delivery.
One of its primary services is providing invaluable advice and information to those facing various challenges, from health and legal issues, to navigating local bureaucracy.
This guidance is often an essential lifeline for expatriates adjusting to life in Spain, and local residents seeking assistance.
Help Vega Baja charity in San Miguel de Salinas
The community team, led by Michele and Richard, comprises 18 volunteers, including a welfare team with a background in the caring profession. They provide critical home visits, assistance with government benefits applications from abroad (such as Attendance Allowance), and emotional support to anyone who needs it.
Help Vega Baja works in partnership with other charities and organisations, including Cruz Roja and the Association of Movers and Shakers, a charity dedicated to supporting people with neurological diseases in the Costa Blanca area.
The charity forms a vital contact point between relatives, often assisting and intervening when younger siblings, often in their home country, have issues with their parents living alone on the Costa Blanca. The team can help family members navigate the often complex administration processes here in Spain.
Additionally, Help Vega Baja operates a charity shop. This initiative raises funds for their activities and serves as a central community hub. The shop offers clothing and fashions, household items, and an extensive range of equipment for hire suited to people with physical challenges and mobility issues.
Digitally connected, the community team have embraced social media to spread their message of support across the South Costa Blanca area.
Their Facebook page receives a substantial number of messages from people seeking support each year, and they received 152 requests for help via Facebook Messenger in 2023 alone.
A membership with money-saving benefits
Help Vega Baja encourages community involvement through membership and volunteering. For a nominal annual fee of €10, members can enjoy various benefits while supporting the charity's mission :-
- Free interpreting service (up to 120 €)
- 50% discount on mobility equipment hire
- Free legal consultation (up to 30 minutes)
- 30% discount at Specsavers opticians
- Preferential rates on funeral services
The San Miguel charity also recently announced a new agreement with Clínica SanySa in Almoradi to grant Help Vega Baja members a 10% discount on various medical treatments.
Specialities include general medicine, radiology, physiotherapy and rehabilitation, gynaecology and obstetrics, psychology, aesthetic medicine and dermatological follow-ups, traumatology and nursing.
Alternatively, volunteering to work with Help Vega Baja offers a chance to give back to the community, meet new people, and develop new skills.
The social side of life in Spain
On the third Tuesday of each month, the charity holds a support and awareness session at the civic offices in Ciudad Quesada. The free monthly sessions take place from 11:00 until 13:00 in association with Rojales town hall.
Help Vega Baja organise social events throughout the year, including a monthly Friendship Lunch and Coffee and Chat afternoons in different venues across the local Costa Blanca region.
Loneliness can be a difficulty for many, and these events provide an invaluable opportunity for people to connect with others socially, form friendships, and meet new people.
Learn more about becoming a charity member or apply online. Alternatively, check out their website and discover more about Help Vega Baja, their mission, and the vital services they deliver in Spain every day.
Looking for holiday ideas and inspiration? Find out more about our favourite recommended things to do on the Orihuela Costa this year, or join the La Zenia Community Facebook group and find out what's going on in the local area.