The British Benevolent Fund: The hard decision of do I stay or go?

Getting there with Linda Hall


The British Benevolent Fund was established over a century ago to act as a  “charity of last resort” to provide financial assistance to Britons in Spain facing extreme hardship.

Wherever possible the BBF looks to find a solution for beneficiaries so that the funds are used to get over a short term issue so that they can get on with their lives.

We all have times in our lives when we need a helping hand.

The pandemic was a major challenge for the BBF, and we saw a spike in applications from people who had lost their jobs or whose businesses had been forced to close.

Some had no choice but to move back to the UK, but others were determined to stay – if they could make it work financially.

The state support for businesses and furloughed workers was a lifeline for them – the issue was often those affected had to wait considerable periods before they received the funds.

The BBF worked with charity partners across Spain ( to try and help find solutions for people who found themselves unable to pay basic items such as utility bills and household expenses for a situation that nobody had planned for and taken many unawares.

One such case was a middle-aged man who had lived and worked in Benidorm for many years. He was legally resident and had been furloughed early in the pandemic but subsequently his employer went into collapse, and he had to find a new job. This he did and we were able to provide some support him until this started.

The BBF does not have the resources to provide ongoing financial support but if in the case of so many during the pandemic people were awaiting to restart work or businesses then we will do everything we can to help.

We were able to do so for countless other people with help to get them through until normality returned – which it has now finally done.

The BBF can only do this through your generosity. If you would like to support our work, please visit our website or contact me – Thank you! Olaf Clayton, BBF Chair.

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Written by

British Benevolent Fund

Olaf Clayton is the chairman of the British Benevolent Fund and shares the charity's expat stories with the Euro Weekly News every week