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:
Compassionate Assistance After Recovering from a Terminal Illness
Marcos arrived in the US in 1976 and has lived here ever since. He is a green card holder and, for the majority of his time in the US, supported his musical career by working as a caregiver. Upon contacting the BBS, Marcos was in remission from colon cancer but, because of complications following his treatment, he was physically unable to work. He had been extremely resourceful and applied for both disability and long-term medical insurance, but both were about to expire.
Marcos came to the BBS with a short term plan, asking for assistance that would allow him to continue with treatment, and over the course of 3 months get himself back on his feet to begin working as a caregiver once again.
The Relief Committee unanimously agreed to assist and we wish him all of the best. We believe that along with his determination to beat cancer, he will also be able to return to a life of music and caregiving.
The Stress of Mental Health Issues and Travel
It isn’t uncommon for individuals to unexpectedly show up at the British Consulate in need of immediate assistance. In one case, a traveler turned up at the Consulate very distressed and crying. He had recently gotten out of hospital for mental health reasons, and was due to repatriate to the UK in 2 days but his passport was lost. He was desperate to make his flight and was planning on returning to the UK where he would have the support of his father. Though he had a small amount of cash that would have covered the cost of an emergency travel document, he had no bank cards and not much more with which to survive the 48 hours until his flight.
The BBS and partners at the Consulate decided it best to let him keep what cash he did have, to pay for meals and incidentals. The BBS covered the cost of his emergency travel document and Consular partners provided him with additional advice and support he would need to ensure a safe journey back to the U
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 very lonely and depressed. In two separate cases, the BBS was made aware of two women, living on their own, one her 70’s and the other in her 80’s.
We were able to assist the 80 year old, diagnosed with dementia, to relocate from her apartment in SF, after over 50 years in the same location. She is now living comfortably in an assisted living facility in SF where she receives regular visits from the BBS.
In the other instance, we have begun regular monthly visits with the 70 year old who is on her own in the North Bay. We have been able to help her with a range of health issues, including visits with an eye doctor to get new glasses, as well as help to tidy up her apartment so that it is a more comfortable and inviting space.
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."