The long-awaited F Cruz Días ADIMI centre in Mijas officially opened last Friday.
ADIMI, an association for children with intellectual disabilities, was set up in 1999 by parents of numerous youngsters with varying levels of disability. In the same year, Roy Pieres and Francis Cruz Días, co-founders of CLC World, set up The Smile Foundation, to improve the lives of people on the Costa del Sol.
It became a dream of Francis to see the inauguration of an ADIMI centre, providing enhanced conditions and quality of life for disabled children and their families.
With the generous donation of land and funds from the Mijas town hall, and further donations from ONCE and the provincial government of Malaga, the centre became a reality. Sadly, Francis did not live to see his dream materialise and it is for this reason that the new centre is named after him.
The inauguration was attended by Cristóbal Moreno, president of ADIMI, and Mari Carmen Carmona, councillor for Social Services at Mijas town hall. Also present were representatives from ONCE, Smile and the former mayor of Mijas, Ángel Nozal, who initiated the donation of the land in 1999.
Jordana Días, daughter of Francis, also attended the inauguration in Mijas last Friday, during which, she said: “This morning marked an extremely important day for me. I feel honoured to represent my father at the inauguration of this centre. I could not think of a better way to pay tribute to him, as he was renowned for his kind nature and compassion to others.”
The state-of-the-art facility, which cost 2.6 million euros, will provide a day care centre for profoundly disabled children. The centre will offer an in-hospital care service to give much-needed respite to families who devote their time to caring for their children.
Speech therapy, reading skills and theatre sessions are some of the activities that will be employed to enable the children to reach their full potential and to improve the quality of life for them and their families.
The President of The Smile Foundation, José Luis Mella, said: “It has been some time since we laid the first stone, but it is worth the wait to see the arrival of hope for so many families. We thank all of you that have made this a reality.”
ADIMI hopes to fill the void in society for the care of children who have a disability and ensure the future well-being of those whose parents are no longer alive.
A book charting the story of ADIMI will be kept at the centre and will be available for all to see.