UK Ambassador to Spain Visit

News 05 Sep 2022

UK Ambassador to Spain Visit

UK Ambassador to Spain Visit

The British Ambassador to Spain, Hugh Elliott, visited the Cudeca Hospice in Benalmádena on September 5th. He and his wife María Antonia Martín were given a guided tour of the building and met staff who recounted the history of the palliative care centre founded by British subject Joan Hunt,  the only one of its kind in Spain, and explained the various care programmes. Cudeca, which cares for more than 1,700 people of many different nationalities every year, has home care teams, day care facilities, rehabilitation and physiotherapy services as well as psychological and social care professionals and an In-Patient Unit.

The tour of the installations then moved to the adjoining building, the recently inaugurated Yusuf Hamied Training and Research Centre, where Cudeca will train future palliative care specialists.

Joan Hunt, who died in June 2021, was awarded an OBE in 2002 for her work establishing a centre to care for people with incurable and terminal illnesses, and the Ambassador, who later was due to present the same honour to the Mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, commented that he was very sorry not to have met such a remarkable pioneer. He congratulated all the staff and volunteers for their work to maintain her legacy, and had high praise for the hospice itself and its beautiful surroundings.

Mr Elliott was also introduced to several volunteers, who told him how they help to raise funds either in the charity shops or by organising events, or offer practical help at the hospice or by caring for patients and their families, and he learned how British volunteers had been crucial from the beginning, when Joan Hunt called on her compatriots for help in raising funds for a hospice.

He also had the opportunity to meet , British volunteers from different areas (care, charity shops, events, etc.) as well as , volunteer and event organiser in Cómpeta.

Gill Steele, Roger Guy, Jim Marshall and Cindy Jones with the Ambassador.

After the visit to the centre, they proceeded to visit the facilities of the Cudeca Institute.

The UK's Ambassador Hugh Elliott was accompanied on the visit by his wife María Antonia Martín; Charmaine Arbouin, British Consul in Malaga, and by Cudeca representatives Susan Hannam, Vice President; Liz Parry, trustee; Dr Marisa Martín, Chief Executive and Medical Director, and Rafael Olalla, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Finance