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The vandalised Fundación Hogar Abierto posters torn down in Malaga's Calle Larios. Nuria Triguero
This is the moment mindless vandals destroyed charity's foster family callout campaign in prime Malaga city centre street
Vandalism

This is the moment mindless vandals destroyed charity's foster family callout campaign in prime Malaga city centre street

Three youths were caught on camera in Calle Larios in the second such vandalism incident in a week

Susana Zamora

Malaga

Monday, 22 April 2024, 11:33

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Vandals have destroyed a series of billboards mounted along Malaga city's famous Calle Larios pedestrianised shopping street which called out for more foster families to help a growing number of children in need.

Fundación Hogar Abierto (Open Home Foundation) kicked off its campaign on 9 April by filling the city's main shopping thoroughfare with 80 photographs of famous people from all walks of life with children. But in the early hours of Saturday 20 April, those images were vandalised, with not a single one left standing.

In a video, a group of young people can be seen smashing bits of the signage. "We are devastated; there is no name for what they have done, with all the money, effort and bureaucracy it has taken us to get this project off the ground," said Marisol Romero, coordinator of the foundation.

The organisation reported a first incident the weekend prior after vandals damaged 42 of the 80 posters spread over 40 billboards. The charity repeatedly asked Malaga city council to authorise them to dismantle what was left of the advertisements due to the costs to replace them (4,000 euros). "We were not authorised, we even asked the Film Festival to help us in the negotiations with the council, because we considered the exhibition was no longer presentable; it was not worthy to show it like that," Romero said.

Image of the empty billboards.
Image of the empty billboards. Nuria Triguero

The charity initiative, which has the support of the Malaga Festival, the town hall and the Junta, was an appeal to promote foster care in Malaga, as there are currently around 100 children (540 already in foster care) in need of such help, according to the foundation. A large part of its success is based on its outreach work, with well-known faces agreeing to be pictured on their latest awareness-raising campaign.

Romero said they have now run out of material to organise other campaigns around Malaga province, with almost 10,000 euros of their budget thrown away. However, she is trying to look on the bright side. "They are not going to discourage us, because the objective is so important and noble that we will continue working to achieve it. If we manage to get just one child to be taken in by a family, we will have made up for the bad time," she said.

Malaga city council said National Police officers are investigating the incident.

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