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Areas Social action Social Welfare

La Mola seniors' club to oversee activities at Casa del Poble

Signatura conveni la MolaThe Formentera Council and the seniors' club of la Mola (Associació de Majors del Pilar de la Mola) will form a partnership to oversee programming at la Casa del Poble, the town's social centre. According to the terms of the agreement, signed earlier today by CiF president Jaume Ferrer and Associació president Jaume Escandell, the Council will grant the seniors' club use of the centre for the planning of cultural and social events. The club will also receive a yearly sum of €6,000 to cover a portion of the cultural centre's operating costs.

Until now the seniors' club has been in charge of a part of la Casa del Poble programming, but under the new partnership agreement, the Associació de Majors will oversee all of the activities at the centre except the computer lab and office space the Council uses to manage island initiatives. According to Ferrer, the new partnership is a direct response to requests made by residents of the area. Escandell expressed his gratitude for what he sees as a vote of confidence from the Council and promised the local social centre will soon see more programming, not just for la Mola residents, but for the island at large. Councillor of social services Vanessa Parellada was also present at the signing. She stressed that strong local associations like the Associació de Majors are an important to the island and crucial to ensuring a vibrant local community in la Mola.

Disability assessments now possible on Formentera

Foto valoracio grau discapacitat premsaYesterday, the Govern Balear staff specialists in charge of assessing degrees of discapacity visited the Formentera day centre. Vicent Verdera, an 84 year old Formentera-native, was the first patient the workers met with. According to Mr Verdera’s daughter, Pepita, though almost two years have gone by since doctors amputated her father’s leg, architectural barriers have meant Mr Verdera has been unable to make the trip to Eivissa to have his disability assessed. The Verderas were not alone. Two other patients at the day centre also benefitted from the visit by the employees of the Govern. Other specialists – a doctor, a psychologist and a social worker – are also available to come to Formentera upon request, thus sparing residents trips to Eivissa, explained Vanessa Parellada, head of Formentera’s office of social welfare.

Until now, Formentera residents who needed the degree of their disability assessed were required to schedule an appointment and travel to Eivissa, «with all the inconveniences that came along with it», added Councillor Parellada. «We proposed a possible solution to the regional minister of social services – Fina Santiago – and she accepted», said Parellada, pointing out that the Govern was itself eager to ensure social services were within the reach of Formentera residents.

The Council pays for the specialists’ travel costs to the Formentera day centre, where they have access to a work space. Interested individuals, Parellada concluded by saying, can contact the social services office of Formentera – or Eivissa – for more information or to request a local visit by one of the available specialists.

Fifteen students graduate from integration course

Foto curs integracio novembre 2015On Thursday, 26 November, a group of fifteen students and one professor held the final session of a course on social and cultural integration. The short course was organised by the immigration office of the CiF department of social welfare and held in Formentera's adult learning centre, l'Escola d'Adults. Department head Vanessa Parellada was on hand to personally hand out certificates attesting students had successfully completed the integration course, and, in some cases, a parallel language course as well. Both attestations are required to complete the application for a residency permit.

This particular course has been offered twice a year – in March and November – since 2013. This year's group comprised a broad range of nationalities: Argentinians, Colombians, Pakistanis and Moroccans. In class, the students learned overviews of the values embodied in the Spanish constitution, human rights and civil liberties, the Balearic statute of autonomy, the European Union and gender equality.

In November, the group met over 20 hours on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. The classes, explained Councillor Parellada, are conceived for recent arrivals to Formentera who are interested in fully integrating into civil society here.

Formentera takes another step forward on gender-based violence

Presentacio dia contra violencia de genere premsaVanessa Parellada, head of the department of social welfare and Azuzena Carrasco, staff specialist, met with Espai Dones president Vanessa Díaz to unveil the activities programme to back Formentera’s celebration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, tomorrow, 25 November. Councillor Parellada pointed to funding and logistical help the administration provides Espai Dones «to ensure such events take place». «However», she continued, «we must go even further in the fight against gender-based violence». She indicated the desire of CiF officials to «tackle the issue using education».

The Espai Dones president expressed her thanks for the Formentera Council’s support but bemoaned the fact «gender-based violence remains a pressing issue». Tomorrow at six in the evening an informational stand will be set up at la Constitució square. Then, at 7:30, a text in which Espai Dones speaks out against gender-based violence will be read before crowds on the square. Finally, at eight o’ clock, an exhibit on Simone de Beauvoir (Feminista i escriptora) will open at the municipal gallery. Ms Díaz asked for all to come out in red shoes.

The activities programme continues through 12 December, when organisers plan to bring together women of the island for a supper for sisterhood. A festival of film shorts is scheduled for 27 November and an assertiveness workshop is planned for the first of December. This last year 18 women denounced cases of abuse to the social services office of the Formentera Council.

IB-DONA wants to get your say on equality law

RP ib-dona premsaEarlier today in the plenary hall of the Formentera Council, before a crowd comprising representatives from different local associations, councillor of social welfare Vanessa Parellada joined Rosa Cursach, director of the Balearic institute for women (IB-DONA), in a press conference concerning a draft law on equality known in Catalan as la Llei d'Igualtat.  

The councillor expressed her gratitude to Ms Cursach for «coming in person not only to explain the legislative change, but also ask for residents' help in this process». Cursach appealed to the people of Formentera «to take an active role in the drafting of the law». She added: «With acts like this one today, we hope to create a space where that can occur».

From 4:15 to 5:30 this afternoon in the hall of ceremonies (la sala d'Actes) of the department of culture, the two officials will once again present the draft law. The presentation is intended for the benefit of students of an office of social welfare course on integration and anyone else who was unable to come in the morning.

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