16 Oct 2011

4th World, Zaqueo & Dignipacs

Today we want to give focus to the 4th world, which lives with us and unfortunately is growing by the day.  Due to the crisis, due to abuse from those in power, due to dreams not materialising, due to personal bad luck, due to any number of reasons.  It exists, it’s real and we must not turn our backs on it.  What’s more, nearly no one can be certain that they will not be in a similar position one day.

We want to dedicate this post to Zaqueo, an organisation with no government support, only the support of individuals, that gives it’s time and efforts to the homeless who sleep only metres from the tourist shops of Palma, to those with no financial means and very little government support.  At Zaqueo they can get breakfast and dinner, and at various times during the week can shower.  Some also are able to sleep in this small space. 

Mediterranea has been supporting Zaqueo for many years by providing food and volunteer help.  It is in front of Zaqueo that Mediterranea volunteers distribute 200 – 300 ‘Dignipacs’ once a month.  Bags that contain basic toiletries.  The objective of these Dignipacs is to ensure that whoever has lost their job and has no or very little income, does not also have to loose their dignity and are able to maintain their personal hygiene and health.

Last week numerous reports came out on IB3 TV, in various newspapers and radio stations giving information and details of Mediterranea’s distribution of the Dignipacs, a couple are shown here.

We describe here the people that Zaqueo looks to support, and who the untiring Angel, who runs Zaqueo, works with every day.  He’s an example to us all.

Who they help.
You’ve seen them in the streets: those who help with parking, clean windscreens, sell handkerchiefs, beg, search through the rubbish bins, prostitutes or delinquents.  They are men and women none of whom have work, a house, or the support of their family.  No home, or roof to cover them, abandoned and rejected by society, in absolute loneliness with nowhere to live but the streets.  They are men and women, many of whom are irrecoverably drug dependent, alcoholics, immigrants who have fled poverty and fallen into misery: Spanish, Africans, Rumanians, Bulgarians and Northern Europeans all united by one characteristic, that they have all been very unlucky and are alone and abandoned:  they don’t show up in the statistics so as not to ‘produce’ problems, they are a nuisance, they are trapped but none of them ever imagined that they’d be where they are now.  You can’t believe that they are where they are only by their own hand; somehow society has failed them and let them fall into the gutter.

Zaqueo doesn’t judge them, simply welcomes them, attends them, gives them food and a bed but also understanding, caring and love.

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