A heartfelt message from our former president:
Some of you may have seen my little piece about Padre Antonio in the current edition of Tenerife News. He was a remarkable man who received nationwide fame by offering plots of land in heaven in return for a donation to his mission. His aim was to give the old, infirm, lonely and poor people a refuge within his parish. The donors always received a certificate no matter what size the donation. By this marketing procedure Padre Antonio collected the amazing sum of 12 million euros with which he was able to build Hogar Santa Rita 11 in the area of Las Dehesas.
But he also collected a lot of enemies: Enemies who listened to rumours. Rumours spread through envy. He died a frustrated man beaten by red tape as he saw his masterwork, to create an Alzheimers centre, blocked by politicians and magistrates .
Why am I telling you this? It’s because Padre Antonio knew that if he could draw attention to himself, his voice would be heard and his mission would benefit. Whilst Padre Antonio was building his homes for old people he was already thinking of his new project, the International Alzheimer’s Centre; a dream too far.
My predecessor as President, Helen Jamieson, also had a dream. While she was attending the lunches and entertaining the bus trippers she was thinking of her new project. She wanted to open a Charity Shop here in Puerto de la Cruz. Helen was faced with the same red tape and unhelpful advice until, finally, she also became totally frustrated and dropped the project. I owe it to Helen and to our charities to pick up the baton and limp with it.
Each one of you can play your part by drawing attention to the Friends of Tenerife and introducing new members. Last month I talked about social media and how it will promote our work. All you have to do is press “share” on Facebook and all your own friends and family will know about us. Then invite them to support our work when they visit you (as they do).
And please keep our Car Boot store stocked to the rafters.