Reality TV show to tackle rural depopulation in Spain

Reality TV show to tackle rural depopulation in Spain. Source: pixbay/cascalheira

A reality show about depopulation in Spain’s rural villages will be broadcast in October.

A new 20-episode reality TV show, Ruralmind, about Spain’s rural villages will be aired on YouTube and Twitch in October. It will feature 40 contestants who must launch and develop ideas to tackle depopulation in villages with less than 5,000 inhabitants.

The show’s co-founder, Patricia Garcia Gomez, said the goal was to radically change people’s views of rural life: “We see the village as a place for rural tourism and agriculture, but never as a 21st-century village, a place where start-ups of all kinds can be launched.”

The contestants will be sent to three villages in northern and central Spain that have a decreasing population where business plans will be made, with the help of mentors. The contestants will eventually be whittled down to three winners who will each receive seed money of €3,000 (£2,550), with the hopes of showing a new perspective on rural life.

“There are thousands of new businesses that can be launched from small villages that didn’t exist 50 years ago,” Gomez said, pointing out companies that use technology to monitor livestock or are focused on social media marketing,“That’s what we want to convey” she continued.

The show is the latest effort in a list of schemes that aim to tackle the steady depopulation of rural villages in Spain. Many villages have been left behind, some even struggling to access drinking water.

The reality TV show will give the opportunity to showcase the local food offerings as well as nature and historical sites.

Jose Antonio Casauka Moran, Mayor of Santa Eulalia de Galego in northeastern Spain, said: “We said we were already on the map, but the dots are so small that no one notices us, so we hope people will see us.”

However the local reaction to the show is mixed: “Some people who live here don’t really believe that some people want to live here,” he said.

“I think it’s a bit old-fashioned. It’s the idea that you have to leave the countryside to find success.”

Alejandro Hernandez, the show’s other co-founder, said: “We’re always looking for the next Silicon Valley, but perhaps in the rural world, you can be just as innovative or even better.”


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Written by

Laura Kemp

Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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