Hello surfers and ocean lovers,
For a year now, the terms: lockdown, incidence, immunity, etc. have moved into our normal vocabulary. But the corona pandemic creates new realities and other new terms every day. I am optimistic that we will soon enjoy many of the freedoms that we take for granted, but the world after Corona will be different in many aspects.
The fact that people in Europe and also us surfers lack the freedom to travel is expressed in the holiday destinations with sometimes drastic economic and, above all, social upheavals.
What these distortions mean in reality can also be observed here in Fuerteventura.
I've never been a fan of package tourism.
But Fuerteventura is big enough, there are countless beaches, so that even as an individual holidaymaker, you can always rediscover the island for yourself. So one can speak of a peaceful coexistence of package tourism and individual tourism in the past.
Package tourism has now come to a complete standstill. That in no way fills me with glee. On the contrary, I am seriously worried. The fact that the tourism industry can practically no longer work can be seen in Germany at closed travel agencies in many pedestrian zones. Many previously healthy small businesses are in direct danger of bankruptcy. Behind these companies are people and human destinies.
Here in Fuerteventura, over 90% of the hotels are closed as a result of the lack of tourists.
Many people are on short-time work and have to accept significant wage losses. But there are also people who do not receive short-time work benefits, for others the wage (which is lower in Spain than in many countries in Northern and Central Europe) was already scarce in "normal" time and now the short-time work benefit is no longer sufficient to cover a living deny.
Other companies have laid off their employees and there are many former employees who have only been employed for so short a period of time or who have worked at low wages on a commission basis that they have little or no entitlement to social benefits.
The worst: The already cumbersome authorities are not prepared for the large number of applications and many people have been waiting for support for months.
It is not an exaggeration: here in Fuerteventura there are people who have got into trouble through no fault of their own and now do not have enough money to buy groceries. In many cases it also affects families with children. And so, as so often, the weakest in society suffer the most.
The "Caja la pequna Silvia" helps
Our pediatrician Karola Simoni has had a small donation box for years, the content of which goes to families and children who cannot afford everyday things, be it taking part in a school trip, new books, etc.
But since the beginning of the corona pandemic, Karola has received inquiries from families who can no longer even afford to buy groceries.
Now she has founded the "Caja de la pequena Silvia" together with Nobert Kuner, Anke Grützediek, Bianka Eigenbrodt, Monika Reinhartz and David Sarnow, who also live in Fuerteventura.
Little Silvia was the cancer-stricken friend of Karola Simoni, who also had cancer as a child. This friendship with girls against the disease, unfriendly doctors and the cold world of the hospital, was to last forever - but ended with Silvia's losing battle. Karola and her colleagues dedicate the foundation to the strong and happy Silvia, who met death and fear with a laugh.
The help reaches those in need directly
The great thing about the "Caja de la pequena Silvia"? The help arrives straightforward and directly to the families in need.
For the donations, the members of the officially registered non-profit organization go shopping for groceries with the families. After 14 days, the families can buy groceries again for the donation money.
Donations in any kind are also welcome!
Pens, grinding pads, paper, etc. go directly to the families' children. In addition, there is a partnership with the local primary schools, which also make donations in kind to affected children and families.
As big as the heart of the founders of the "Caja de la pequena Silvia" is, the non-profit organization is still very small and can only support families and children in Fuerteventura with the donations available. It is about alleviating the worst hardship of the acute economic and social crisis.
Therefore every donation is welcome and 100% goes to the affected families with children. Of course, the members of the "Caja de la pequena Silvia" work 100% on a voluntary basis.
You can donate quickly and easily here:
In addition to the health crisis triggered by the corona pandemic, there is also a terrible social crisis here in Fuerteventura. Tourism as the main branch of the economy has come to a standstill and there are a number of people, including many families with children, who fall through the social network, which is much wider in Spain.
The non-profit organization of the German doctor Karola Simoni "Caja de la pequena Silvia" with its volunteer members collects donations that are 100% direct and uncomplicated to the people concerned.