There are no one size fits all relief or assistance cases. We frequently receive word of Brits in need of assistance to help pay for passport renewals or to replace expired passports but, we also receive requests for assistance in cases requiring more attention and care. Cases requiring more in depth relief could be welfare or hospital visits to those in need of serious medical attention.
These are just a few of the stories from those we have helped over the last year:
We learned of a particularly serious case that was brought to us by the British Consulate in San Francisco. The Consulate had received word of an 87 year old British national who had been receiving emergency care at a local hospital. She had been discovered living in vile conditions where she had suffered from neglect. A therapist at the hospital contacted the Consulate, hoping to help put her patient in contact with family.
Working with the Consulate, the BBS helped cover the costs of a new passport, basic necessities and repatriation. She was reconnected with family in the UK and has returned home where she is safe and was able to spend the holidays with family.
The Stress of Mental Health Issues and Homelessness
We provided financial aid and emergency repatriation to a British national who suffered from severe mental health issues and had been living on the streets in San Francisco. He had been unable to continue to take his medication and was extremely vulnerable and delicate upon contact with the British Consulate.
It was arranged for him to stay at a hotel for two nights where he could clean up and pull himself together for a flight back to the UK. It was also arranged for him to be greeted by Travel Care upon arrival at Heathrow where they would then assist in reuniting him with his doctor.
Compassionate Assistance and Visiting Brits in the Bay Area
There are a number of Brits in the Bay Area in their golden years living on their own. This can be a time that is one of great enjoyment when surrounded by family and friends. For those with less of a support system, they can fall through the cracks and become isolated and depressed.
Catholic Charities Services in Reno, Nevada contacted the BBS requesting assistance and advice for a British national who needed to renew his passport. In 2018, this organization was very helpful in relocating Gladys as she moved from the Bay Area to Reno. The current applicant, in his mid-70’s, was living in a pay by the week motel and was considering returning to the UK.
The BBS has since paid to renew his passport and have offered future support.
Our BBS Relief Leaflet offers additional information about the assistance we provide as well as more case studies.
The BBS has a special relationship with the British Consulate-General in both San Francisco and Los Angeles.Read More
Emergency Preparedness Resources
Regardless of whether you have been directly impacted by recent events, we can all do well to invest some time in being well-prepared for potential future events.Read More
Who We Help
The BBS responds to appeals for one-time emergency assistance and, in unusual circumstances, provides longer term support.Read More
"Thanks to the BBS, my family was able to return to the UK safely after all of our belongings were stolen. Though difficult to have had happened, amazing to have an organization help us in such a frightening situation."