THE president of a charity shop with a 55-year history on the Costa Blanca has been named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
Georgina Harvey started out volunteering at Javea’s Original Charity Shop and Library some 24 years ago, before becoming president in 2005.
She has overseen the donation of more than 500,000 euros to good causes – including cancer charities, animal associations and homeless shelters – during her tenure.
“It’s a complete surprise, a shock I should say, I feel a fraud, how can you win an honour when it is something you enjoy doing?” Harvey told Costa Blanca News.
“It’s a privilege to be working with all our volunteers; we will be celebrating and having a few bubbles.”
Harvey currently manages a team of 80-plus volunteers, located in their charity shop on Javea’s iconic Arenal beach.
Through selling second-hand goods, the organisation donated more than 40,000 euros in 2018 alone, with 11,000 going to Caritas Internationalis, 10,700 going to the Fransiscan Refuge for Men and 4,035.27 going to MABS Cancer Support.
“My principle is don’t keep money in the bank. If you are doing some good then spend!” Harvey, whose honour has been awarded for ‘services to charity’, said.
She is one of six UK nationals living in Spain recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
The others are:
- An OBE to Mrs Anne McEwan, former president of National Association of British Schools in Spain, for services to education;
- An OBE to Mr John Scott, latterly global deputy chairman, KPMG International, for services to UK/Spain relations;
- An OBE to Mr Derek Doyle MBE, lately British Consul and director of trade and investment, Bilbao, for services to UK/Spain relations;
- A BEM to Mr Stewart Cusden, latterly chair, British Benevolent Fund, Madrid, for services to the British Community in Spain;
- And a BEM to Mr Michael Witty, retired, for services to the British community in Catalonia.
“It is extraordinary to see six British nationals awarded at the same time – a real testament to the depth and diversity of the UK-Spain relationship and to the contribution that so many British nationals make to their communities across Spain,” British Ambassador to Spain, Michael Manley, said in a statement.
“I am incredibly impressed by what the OSCL has achieved under Georgina’s leadership – being a financial success in today’s e-world is something to be very proud of.
“I understand that in its new premises, the shop is known as the ‘Harrods of Javea’. I wish it similar levels of success.”