Unemployment main driver for Spaniards moving to Ireland, says recent arrival

‘Once people settle down here they call their friends and say “this isn’t bad, you can find a job here” ’

Alvaro Cabello, who now teaches Padel, the Spanish racquet sport (which combines elements of tennis, squash and badminton) to Irish students in Bushy Park in Terenure, Dublin.

Alvaro Cabello, who now teaches Padel, the Spanish racquet sport (which combines elements of tennis, squash and badminton) to Irish students in Bushy Park in Terenure, Dublin.

 

When Alvaro Cabello came to Ireland in 2012 it was for economic reasons. Work in his home city of Cordoba in the southern Spanish region of Andalusia was hard to come by and his brother had already been living in Ireland for more than two decades.

Like Ireland, Spain suffered a deep recession in the aftermath of the 2008 economic crash with unemployment peaking at 27 per cent. Youth unemployment climbed to more than 56 per cent with tens of thousands leaving the country to find work abroad.

Cabello is one of the more than 12,100 Spaniards living in the State. Like the majority of his fellow countrymen and women in Ireland, he lives and works in Dublin.

Shortly after his arrival, Cabello and his brother set up the Padel Federation of Ireland and began teaching the Spanish racquet sport (which combines elements of tennis, squash and badminton) to Irish students. His second daughter was born in Ireland and the family now lives in Dundrum.

Asked why so many Spaniards have chosen to move to Ireland in recent years, Cabello says at least half come here initially to learn English.

‘To learn English’

“They’re unemployed after they graduate so they come here to learn English so they can find jobs easier. Then they end up finding jobs here and they stay.”

Other Spaniards follow friends and family to Ireland, he adds. “Once people settle down here they call their friends and say ‘this isn’t bad, you can find a job here. People help one another out’.”

Cabello, who now teaches Padel in Bushy Park in Terenure, says he has struggled with the high cost of living in the State but is happy he made the move. “When you have a dream and you really want to go ahead with it then you build the rest of your life around that,” he says.