Spain Explained

Making the last wish come true

Imagine that before you die you have the privilege of rubbing a magic lamp, just like Aladdin, to make a wish come true. You perhaps have opportunity to wish for something that you have never been able to do before. A last wish.

Four health workers have established in Murcia a scheme that enables people to make that wish. It might be something simple like listening to their favourite music at home or a place they’ve always wanted to visit. The four nurses; Manuel Pardo, Carolina Cánovas, Laura Juguera and the doctor José Manuel Salas have been making dreams come true for the last six months.

The initiative comes under the name of Fundación Ambulancia del Último Deseo and the four have managed to enlist 125 volunteers to help carry out wishes across the whole of Spain. Some of the people they have helped include Lucia, Zoila, Rafaela, Ana and Fabri.

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Lucía

Lucía has a tumour and her request was that the musician Cris Méndez would come to her house to play the guitar. Lucía’s parents had contacted the organisation on Facebook. When the musician heard that this was Lucía’s wish, she was happy to comply. As was another singer and actress ‘Angy’ who had been a participant in the TV show Factor X. Sadly, Lucía died a month after the visits of the two celebrities. But they both managed to bring a smile to her face.

Zoila and Rafaela

Another case involved a mother and daughter. Zoila (38) had been diagnosed with cancer along with her mother Rafaela (70). Zoila wanted to say goodbye to her mother. She was in a hospital in Madrid and her mother in Barcelona. The Fundación Ambulancia del Último Deseo arranged for an ambulance to take Zoila to Barcelona. She also asked to be taken to the beach.

A month later, at the end of September, it was Rafaela who made contact with the organisation to ask for their help. Her daughter, Zoila was in palliative care and Rafaela wanted to be with her in her last moments. Again, an ambulance was organised for Rafaela. Zoila finally died in November.

Ana

Ana from Murcia, is a woman of 79 years old. She had been in a clinic since 2010 and even though it was located only 40 kilometres from the coast, no-one had taken  her to the beach. Her wish was to bathe in the Mar Menor. Again, they organised a trip to the beach, and with the help of the Civil Protection Unit, Ana was able to enter the water on a specially adapted chair. Afterwards she had something to eat at the beach bar and an ice cream.

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Fabri

The final wish to be granted this year was that of a five year old whose parents wanted him to spend Christmas in his own country. Fabri was from Ecuador and the airline Iberia agreed to help transport the child there for Christmas.

Making more wishes come true

The idea came from Rotterdam (Holland) 12 years ago. Now there are six ambulances and 230 volunteers who have helped to carry out a total of 8,000 wishes. These include helping a woman of 101 years old ride a horse and another woman seeing her favourite Rembrandt painting. The project has spread to seven countries and is set to continue bringing more last wishes to reality.

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