Simply Thriving and banishing loneliness

Simply Thriving Photo: Shutterstock / Happy cafe

Loneliness is a prevalent and global problem and it has been linked to multiple chronic conditions, including: heart disease, lung disease, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, atherosclerosis, stroke, and metabolic disorders, such as obesity and metabolic disease. It’s a major predictor of psychological problems, such as depression, psychological stress, and anxiety.

This is a particular problem on the Costa del Sol for retired expats where many couples moved from UK and decided to come and live in Spain. The exodus started in the 80’s and involved all ages moving to Spain, some to retire, younger couples to set up businesses and all hoping for a better life, better climate, and a cheaper cost of living.

It worked for many; others returned to UK having used up all their savings at failed businesses. Marriages broke up, partners died and for many it was impossible to move back and buy property in UK because of the high cost of housing. Coupled to this was the difficulty so many found in trying to master a foreign language That led to isolation of single and couples alike.

There are now many expats living here and suffering from loneliness causing serious harm to one’s health and bringing great distress to the individual. There are many associations that one can join to alleviate loneliness, Lions, Rotary, Freemasons, which are charitable groups as well as social groups and do so much for local charities.

Other groups in the area doing a lot of good work are Age Concern and Age Care and who help out with hospital visits, advice and do so much good work to help elderly people in the area. Cudeca also work wonders and help so many people who are diagnosed with cancer. They also involve themselves with children with cancer and aim to give them quality of life.

Other social groups are walking groups such as one in Fuengirola and a Ladies walking group in La Cala. All these different groups have a Facebook site where they explain their aims and support.

There are also many social groups which can be found on Facebook, friends of Fuengirola, Gastro club, U3A, etc. and anyone involved in any sort of club offering friendship and help to the local community are invited to put a post on the Simply Thriving group Facebook page so they can explain what exactly they can offer to our residents here on the coast.

Some people just want to join a simple group and feel wanted, accepted and welcome. Such a group is Simply Thriving Group, started in the pandemic as Simply Surviving and which helped out many businesses to survive at such a difficult time. After the pandemic it changed to Simply Thriving, just a simple social group where monthly lunches and monthly events are held and anyone can join in. There is always a table for singles but it is not a single dating group.

Simply Thriving group operate from September until June. On June 28 they have their last event on the year at La Sierra. It is the Posh red-carpet evening with drinks, a meal, entertainment and fun for just €39 and €4 euros per person is donated to the Last Chance Animal Association. Everyone is welcome, book with Jeremy at La Sierra or Val on 951313257. Please do not feel isolated or lonely on this coast.

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Written by

Kevin Fraser Park

Kevin was born in Scotland and worked in marketing, running his own businesses in UK, Italy and, for the last 8 years, here in Spain. He moved to the Costa del Sol in 2016 working initially in real estate. He has a passion for literature and particularly the English language which is how he got into writing.