This moved me. It is a make believe restaurant in Vigo in which unemployed parents in Spain take their children to “eat out”. They take turns as volunteers. It is really a charity that makes children believe that their parents can afford to take them out to a restaurant. I felt so bad for those parents.

If you don’t live in Spain and you come here and go around you would be surprised. Spain is actually a wealthy country in global terms and it doesn’t look poor when you travel around here. But since the construction industry collapsed unemployment grew from 8% to 21%. Basically all of those who worked in that industry are having a very hard time finding a new role in the economy for themselves. The collapse of real estate had a tremendously negative multiplier effect. It is a huge part of the population that is in such bad shape and it will probably take a decade for unemployment to go down to where it was in 2008. In the meantime initiatives like this help alleviate the pain of those who have fallen into poverty.

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Adan on January 17, 2012  · 

It truly is sad. I often wonder how Spain is going to get out of this one. Before the construction boom, Spain was at 20% unemployment, and it was the construction boom that took them to lower unemployment and a higher standard of living. Seeing as Spain is ranked 39 in the world for most innovative countries, I don’t see what industry will bail them out this time. Luckily, tourism has been coming around a bit, but it’s not enough to grow and get people back to work. Spaniards are going to have to realize that they’re going to have to develop new skills and create a bit. But most of the elder people with children will not be able to return to school or a formal training institute. I don’t think they want to either…

My dream was to finish graduate school in the states and move to Spain to start a business. I even forced my whole family to obtain dual US-Spanish citizenship for that purpose; we visit our native town and family there every year anyway, so they didn’t mind so much. But after 2008, I knew it wasn’t going to happen. Perhaps someday…

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Mike on January 18, 2012  · 

In USA and Canada, welfare recipients may not have enough money to go to restaurants, but somehow always manage to have money for kids, cigarettes, drugs and alcohol. And because reason of this they stay on welfare for 3yrs, 10yrs and sometimes approaching a lifetime.

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