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Formentera plugs into Balearic 'children's pact'

foto-pacte-per-la-infancia-21As of today the Formentera Council is the newest signatory of the Pacte Balear per la Infància (“Balearic Pact for Children”). Council president Jaume Ferrer put together the document with the directors of UNICEF Balears and Oficina de Defensa dels Drets del Menor and party representatives of groups within the Formentera Council (Gent per Formentera, PP, PSOE and Compromís).

The Council's adhesion to the pact is one piece of the roadmap drafted by the related monitoring committee, signed into existence in November 2013 by the political groups with representation in Parlament.

Vanessa Parellada pointed out the administration already exercises control over issues concerning children and said the island's embrace of the pact meant “extending the Council's commitment to best conditions for the boys and girls of Formentera, giving them a political and social voice and taking responsibility for their well-being.

“It's crucial we get the buy-in of arms of government like the Council, whose work directly impacts child welfare”, affirmed UNICEF Balears president Mercedes del Pozo, “because with public policy we can effect real improvements in children's conditions”.

Formentera's adhesion to the pledge now sets in motion the creation of a monitoring committee whose job it will be to produce an annual review of the local programme's outcome and impact including proposals for new initiatives.

Council officials and del Pozo also put their signatures on an extension of the island's Child Friendly Cities recognition and gave an an accreditory diploma and compact to 2022.

Formentera celebrates International Volunteer Day

foto dia-internacional-del-voluntariatThe Formentera Council's social welfare department reminds islanders that local observance of International Volunteer Day is this Wednesday December 5.

The Formentera Council wishes to salute the tireless, perennial efforts of volunteer staff. Many wings of the Council rely on the help and participation of volunteers, who work to support the organisation and implementation of nearly every event the Council backs.

In their charitable efforts, volunteers are the anonymous and frequently all but invisible protagonists of the vast majority of local celebrations, events and projects. The island's corp of volunteers currently boasts a head count of roughly 200.

In observance of International Volunteer Day, visitors to Sant Francesc's plaça de la Constitució will find a booth stocked with information for volunteers and anyone keen to learn more. A dedicatory sign will also be hung from the Council balcony in recognition of volunteers' selfless work.

Formentera welcomes pioneering day-long summit on disabilities

foto discapacitatsThe Formentera Council's social welfare office reports the first Jornades sobre Discapacitat took place Wednesday on the island and saw representatives of groups like APNEEF, APMIPTEA and APIES taking stock of their Formentera-based efforts, as well as others from the DISCARED federation praise interconnectivity between organisations and government agencies.

APNEEF's emissaries spoke about SEDIAP, a programme, backed by the Balearic social services bureau and now under development with the Formentera Council, to provide early care services in the Pityusics. The programme has been responsible for key hand-offs of properties, like for a local nursery, Formentera's dependent care facility and the Antoni Blanc fitness centre.

APMIPTEA associates opened up about the FORMATEA programme, which receives support from the region's general directorate for sports and youth and is included in the Formentera Council's vision plan for encouraging sport, builds on collaboration with fitness trainers, athletes and families in training and awareness efforts to achieve full integration for children and youth with special needs.

APIES members drew attention to the efforts the group oversees to integrate children with special needs academically and socially.

Following the presentations, a round-table discussion aimed not only to offer a picture of the present situation for people on Formentera with disabilities and some of the age-related challenges ahead, but also to educate people on how to make use of the resources already available. Panelists stressed the role of networking and the importance of strong government support.

In addition to APNEEF, APMIPTEA, APIES, the day's participants hailed from IES Marc Ferrer, the local youth drop-in centre, the department of health and other local groups like Fibromiàlgia and the Formentera chapter of the Spanish Association against Cancer (AECC).

The gatherings are part of Formentera's programming in support of International Day for Persons with Disabilities on Monday December 3.

Formentera poised to take reigns on equality, action against gender violence and LGTBI policy

foto consell premsaFrom January 1, 2019 the social welfare department of the Formentera Council will assume responsibility for matters related to equality, gender violence and LGTBI policy.

For months the department has nurtured cooperation with the Balearic first minister's office to see the hand-off of authority in functions and services is properly funded. Those same negotiations are now singled out as having been crucial to the €125,844.55 in appropriations that Formentera is set to receive from Palma (the figure used to be €20,000).

Social welfare secretary Vanessa Parellada pointed out that an existing agreement meant the financial burden of victim care and violence prevention were split two ways—“though, to do the right thing, the Council has historically made up the difference when funds came up short”. Parellada heralded the new era of Council control in the three spheres, saying it would create the possibility of “more community-oriented action and fairer funding”.

Formentera celebrates International Day of Persons with Disabilities

foto dia discapacitat 2018 2The Formentera Council social welfare office reports that the programme of activities which begins this Monday, December 3, to commemorate International Day of Persons with Disabilities was unveiled today.

Vanessa Parellada, the Council's secretary of social welfare, and Marta Uriarte, director of the island's dependent care centre, the Centre de Dia, were joined by representatives of the Eivissa-Formentera association for people with special needs (APNEEF), the Pau Mayans association for the integration of people on the autism spectrum (APMIPTEA) and the Pityusic association for educational and social inclusion (APIES) in presenting a host of events scheduled to take place from November 28 to December 16.

First ever Jornades sobre la Discapacitat

On Wednesday, November 28, the first Jornades sobre la Discapacitat, day-long features on the resources and services available locally people with disabilities, will take place in the Centre de Dia's conference hall. Parellada described the gatherings as “a showcase for efforts that are under way locally—partnerships with a range of groups working to support people with disabilities—aimed at meeting needs within this community”. The idea, says the secretary, is to educate families about the resources that exist to help them.

The Jornades get started at 9.30am and will begin with a presentation of the activities offered at the service for childhood development and early care (SEDIAP), DISCARED Ibiza, the network of families of people with disabilities and APIES, plus a look at APMIPTEA's Formatea project. The event will be followed with a round-table discussion and will close with an open day at the dependent care facility.

Other activities

For International Day of Persons with Disabilities, from 11.00am to 1.00pm on Monday, December 3, groups will mount information stands in Sant Francesc's plaça de la Constitució. APNEEF, APMIPTEA and APIES will share information about the activities and programmes they organise on Formentera and sell handkerchiefs for the charity walk.

December 8, the local cinema (Sala de Cultura) welcomes back Campeones, Spain's contribution to this year's Oscar awards. The free screening starts at 6.00pm.

Second Caminada Solidària
The final event for International Day of Persons with Disabilities happens Saturday December 16 with the second annual Caminada Solidària. The tagline of this year's walk is “Walking together without barriers” and participants will set out on a two-kilometre route from jardí de ses Eres. “The walk is accessible for people with a range of disabilities”, confided Parellada. “so everyone can take part”. Walkers are expected at 1.00pm for snacks in jardí de ses Eres.

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