The Government of Gibraltar will donate €8,000 to our sister city of Funchal, Madeira, to assist in the city’s recovery and future protection capacities following the fires it suffered in August this year.
The money will provide one of the “Local Self Protection Kits” that Funchal will be installing in ten civil parishes around the capital. These kits aim to help fires to be fought locally, with quick and effective measures, before the arrival of the professional fire-fighting teams. The kits consist of different items, from protection gloves and masks to hoses and chainsaws.
In addition to the Government’s donation, a separate fund opened by Mr Louis Pereira raised £2,426, which has already been transferred to Funchal. Mr Pereira lived in Funchal during the Evacuation and since his return to Gibraltar has been instrumental in maintaining the links between both cities.
Gibraltar and Funchal share a historic relationship, and the two cities were twinned in 2009. The Local Self Protection Kit purchased by the Government will be donated to the Civil Parish of São Pedro. During the Evacuation the British School for Gibraltar children was in this Parish and the Church of São Pedro is where many Gibraltar children born in Madeira were baptised.
The Chief Minister, Fabian Picardo, said: “Funchal has always been a good friend to Gibraltar, and became home to many Gibraltarians in our time of need during the evacuation of our people in the Second World War. Madeira and Funchal are therefore very close to the hearts of many Gibraltarian families and we cannot stand by when they have needs of their own. It is absolutely right that Gibraltar should reciprocate now in our own small and humble way to help our sister city recover from the devastating fires experienced over the summer. We send this material with all our affection, solidarity and deep friendship.”