‘Caravan of Love’
Rapid industrialisation is what that has made Europe the kind of world it is today. The Europeans own this factor hugely for the standard of living they enjoy now. As a result of this factor, several significant changes have occurred in the European continent –both positive and negative. Among them, the most disappointing one is the evil of depopulation. The European villages are the ones that have become the prime victims of depopulation.
What is ‘Caravan of Love’? It is a program organised in Spain by a couple to confront the issue of depopulation in a different way –correctly, in a sensible way. In Spain, the majority of its village are in the grip of depopulation. Single men are the prime residents of many of these villages. They are the ones who have been accidentally left behind by the rail of modernisation or who have voluntarily chosen to stay out of the train due to their attachment towards their roots or their affection towards the place they have born and spend their childhood with their families. Whatever it is, most of them are not of the opinion that they have done something wrong by choosing not to enter the train towards a European city or, in exact terms, towards the world of modernity. Most of them are farmers. They are happy with the money they earn from their profession. Still, their lives are not completely oblivious to unhappiness. What that worries them the most is loneliness. Many of them need to travel miles if they feel to talk to another person as their villages are too barely populated. It is where the ‘Caravan of Love’ works.
The program, organised by Spanish couple Manolo Gozalo and Venecia Alcantara, offers opportunities to unmarried village men to find their right partners. The couple arranges at least one program a month. A village party in which the village men who are under the clutches of loneliness are given chance to interact with the city women who are in search for real love is the prime event of the program. The ladies who participate in the trip are mostly those who are fed up with the artificial life of city and wish to settle in peaceful villages with lovable partners.
As per the organisers’ account, so far, as many as 180 couples have benefited from their program.
This program is also not spared from the heat of criticism. The critics of the program claim that the majority of the women that is brought to the Spanish villages by the organisers as a part of this program are either those reached the country as migrants searching for shelters or those recently relocated to Spain from Latin America or Easter Europe (the poorer part of Europe) suffering from serious financial crisis. The critics are of the opinion that the helpless ladies are exploited in the name of ‘Marriage’ –it is reported that of 180 couples which has united together with the support of the program, at least 80 are no longer together as happily married couples.
Vignesh. S. G
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