Challenge achieved. The Solidarity Telethon led by Mírame TV, with the support of RTVE in Canary Islandscollected yesterday in Mercatenerife 40 tons of non-perishable food, toys and other products destined for the Food Banks of Tenerife and Gran Canaria. Starting today, they will be distributed among 40,000 vulnerable people, including 4,000 children belonging to families in severe poverty. Everyone will see their basic needs covered for three months thanks to this initiative.
Hundreds of volunteers and collaborators went out of their way for eight intense hours to receive donations from public bodies, entities, companies and individuals. Manuel Artiles, director of the chain, was happy and satisfied at the end of the long day with this action that is recovered after two years of not being able to celebrate due to the pandemic.
Mercatenerife is a very quiet place at noon on any weekday because all the fish is sold after an activity that begins at dawn. But yesterday was the exception. Just after twelve o’clock in the morning, vehicles began to arrive up to a total of 200 throughout the day. First the Army, then the National Policethe Local of Santa Cruz and the Firemen of the insular Consortium. Security and Emergency bodies and forces that exemplify solidarity. Without forgetting the toilets that were noticed with the sound of the ambulances.
The Army trucks appeared loaded to the brim. The professional military unloaded them little by little with the help of the volunteers. Solidarity in khaki green.
The men in blue from the Police were the next to express their support. With what was collected by its 1,500 members on the Island, they arrived “with the hope of helping those who need it most at a particularly difficult time and on dates as important as this one,” said their spokesperson.
The Santa Cruz Local Police, a classic of the annual solidarity event, is also not missing the appointment. In front, the mayor, José Manuel Bermúdez, and the capital’s Security Councilor, Evelyn Alonso.
A hundred entities collaborated in this edition with the first event after the pandemic
A parade of a thousand carnival-goers toured Mercatenerife
228 volunteer groups participated in the initiative
“Here come the firefighters with their bells and their sirens.” A small license to remember the lyrics of the mythical Cuban rumba, the work of the Spanish-Caribbean composer Sergio Siaba, which responds to the expectation that those who expose themselves to put out the fire always arouse.
Together with the representation of organisms and entities, official or not, the anonymous people came to donate for a pure solidarity concept. Like Marcel and Isabel, a middle-aged couple from Santa Cruz, who brought diapers, bottles, and pacifiers for the little ones. They are clear that “you have to help even if the responsibility lies with those who are higher up. We already do it with money for other NGOs and now it’s time for gifts because we like that children don’t lack for anything on these dates. They have made an appeal in this sense and hence what we bring for the children ».
Volunteers and students
The characteristic human chain in this type of event is made up of volunteers. From the Food Bank or not. Not even the sun of justice daunts them. Nor to Alba Santamaría and Rocío Mayor, both 19 years old and university students of Design. They explain that “in the ULL They sent a statement asking for volunteers and we decided to live a different experience. They value that “we are very happy to be able to help people in need, and more so at Christmas. In an environment like this with music, performances on stage and good vibes, even better ». Together with young and old who selflessly collaborate is the Mírame TV team. From the watchmen to presenters like Ricardo Negrín who has participated so many times that he does not remember the exact number. He says to keep “intact the illusion; there will be as long as there is a need”
Carmen Toubes is the manager in the Canary Islands of Aldi supermarkets. This chicharrera shows “great emotion” for participating in this day of solidarity in her land. She values ”the organization, the involvement of the volunteers and the generosity of the people who donate.” Aldi’s participation in the 2022 Solidarity Telemarathon is part of the company’s efforts to contribute to the social sphere. Thus, with the aim of avoiding waste, it distributes essential food in solidarity among the most vulnerable groups. For example, it donated more than 4,600 kilos of products to the Las Palmas Food Bank during the first half of this year. It is worth noting the support yesterday of well-known brands, in addition to Aldi, such as McDonalds, Alcampo, Montemar, Montesano, Fuente Alta, Aguas de Teror, Libbys or Egatesa.
Paco Torres and Macu Jorge have been collaborating on this initiative for six and four years, respectively. They come from Güímar with three roundabouts and a group of elders from the municipality. In total, 160 people in three buses plus private vehicles. They form the groups Sangre Marina (Puertito de Güímar), Virgen del Rosario (Fátima) and Virgen de la Peña (La Hoya). All in red, dressed in their Santa Claus hats and headed by the mayor, Gustavo Pérez, who proudly displays the products that his town donates.
Miguel, Sara and Bea prepare the 80 serrano ham and tortilla sandwiches, -40 and 40- that correspond to the La Pausita cafeteria, a family business and one of the two located inside Mercatenerife. The other, Mercabar, contributes 80 more sandwiches to complete the 160 for the provisioning of volunteers. Migue and Sara are the parents of two daughters, the eldest, 10-year-old Ezra, and the little Halia, 20 months old. This is the soul of the establishment. After a while, the manager of Mercatenerife, the Galician Jesús Alejandro Fernández, one of the great architects of everything going well yesterday, enters. Miguel explains how exceptional it is to work at these hours, beyond two in the afternoon, because the day starts at two-thirty in the morning, the time that corresponds to a wholesale market.
The president of the Cabildo, Pedro Martín, showed his most relaxed face in the Telemarathon. Happy and proud to receive a plaque from the NGOs, whose work “is not paid”, for the work he carried out during the pandemic. He assured that “I do not put this in the Cabildo; I take it home.” In addition to Martín, the meeting was attended by, among others, the president of the Parliament of the Canary Islands, Gustavo Matos; the regional councilor for Ecological Transition, José Antonio Valbuena or the president of the Canarian Federation of Municipalities (Fecam) and mayoress of Candelaria, Mari Brito.
Nearly 10,000 people participated in an event that had the collaboration of a hundred entities. Broadcast live for more than 10 hours, it ended after 10:00 p.m. At nightfall, a Carnival procession in December enlivened the end of the festival. Mercatenerife was filled for another year, and there are now twelve, with generosity.