Stories written by Inés Benítez
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Child Poverty in Spain Seen Through the Eyes of Encarni

“I would like to have a big house, and I wish my family didn’t have to go out and ask for food or clothes,” Encarni, who just turned 12, tells IPS in the small apartment she shares with five other family members in a poor neighbourhood in the southern Spanish city of Málaga.

The Invisible Reality of Spain’s Homeless

“It’s easy to end up on the street. It’s not because you led a bad life; you lose your job and you can’t afford to pay rent,” says David Cerezo while he waits for lunch to be served by a humanitarian organisation in this city in southern Spain.

Eco-Friendly Agriculture Puts Down Roots in Spain

José María Gómez squats and pulls up a bunch of carrots from the soil as well as a few leeks. This farmer from southern Spain believes organic farming is more than just not using pesticides and other chemicals – it’s a way of life, he says, which requires creativity and respect for nature.

Child Malnutrition Doesn’t Take Vacation in Spain

It’s two in the afternoon, and María stirs tomato sauce into a huge pot of pasta. School is out for the summer in Spain, but the lunchroom in this public school in the southern city of Málaga is still open, serving meals to more than 100 children from poor families.

Spain: A Precarious Gateway to Europe for Syrian Refugees

Little Samir covers his face with his hands as he plays under the orange tree in the centre of the inner courtyard of the Spanish Refugee Aid Commission (CEAR) centre in the southern city of Malaga. He is four years old and has spent nearly a year in Spain, where he arrived with his parents, fleeing the war in Syria.

Hemp Defies Hurdles to Make a Comeback in Spain

Spain is experiencing a resurgence of hemp, one of the species of cannabis with the lowest THC content, which has been used for millennia to produce textile, medicinal and food products.

Community Electricity Lights Up Spain

Until recently it was inconceivable for small groups of organised citizens in fully electrified industrialised countries like Spain to generate their own power from clean sources of energy, challenging the prevailing energy model.

Soaring Child Poverty – a Blemish on Spain

“I don’t want them to grow up with the notion that they’re poor,” says Catalina González, referring to her two young sons. The family has been living in an apartment rent-free since December in exchange for fixing it up, in the southern Spanish city of Málaga.

Sea Swallows the Stories of Africans Drowned at Ceuta

“Who will speak for them now? Who will tell their stories to their families in Cameroon or Ivory Coast?” asked Edmund Okeke, a Nigerian, about the 15 migrants who died while trying to swim to the shore of the Spanish city of Ceuta from Morocco.

Door Closing on Universal Justice in Spain

The pursuit of universal jurisdiction in Spain is drawing to a close because of a bill that will entail the dismissal of over a dozen criminal investigations in the country’s courts and will make it very difficult to open new cases of crimes against humanity.

Ordinary Spaniards Lend Saharawi People a Helping Hand

Volunteers are hard at work in an industrial warehouse in the Spanish city of Malaga, organising thousands of kilos of rice, sugar, lentils and oil to be shipped this February to Saharawi refugee camps in Tindouf, in the west of Algeria.

Moroccan Women Porters – Heroism and Hardship on the Border

Before sunrise, a Moroccan woman waits her turn at the pedestrian border control separating her country from the Spanish city of Melilla. Hours later she crosses over, takes up an 80-kilo bundle of merchandise and carries it back to her country, for a payment of less than six dollars.

Educational Network Erases Borders

Hundreds of students from Spain’s Canary Islands, Senegal and the Sahrawi refugee camps outside of Tindouf in western Algeria are meeting each other and breaking down cultural barriers thanks to the Red Educativa Sin Fronteras.

Assisting Rather than Deporting Trafficking Victims in Spain

María came to Spain from Paraguay to work as a housekeeper in a hotel. But it was a false job promise, and she ended up in a nightclub, where she was forced to work as a prostitute.

Some Spanish Police Protect Immigrants

They are members of Spain’s Guardia Civil. But instead of pursuing undocumented immigrants like the rest of the police in Spain, they are there to defend them from the crimes to which they often fall victim.

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