The final phase of the euro awareness campaign gathered more pace yesterday with all the members of the Balearic parliament receiving their euro starter kits, although they did not have to queue up: the kits were handed out by waiter carrying the bags of coins on a silver tray. Across Palma school children were taking part in a number of euro schemes and the Pueblo Espanyol hosted a huge euro party for the retired and elderly to mark the end of the euro pensioner 2001 campaign organised by the Balearic European Centre and Sa Nostra bank. Over 800 pensioners gathered at the Pueblo Espanyol and Balearic leader Francesc Antich said that the elderly are now probably more accustomed to the single currency than any other section of the community because of all the attention they have been given. Antich wished them all “good health and euros” for 2002. Balearic Minister for Finance, Joan Mesquida, said that his ministry has been working “frantically” over the past few months in order to “rid the public of their single currency fears and boost their confidence in the euro.” The Euro pensioner 2002 campaign was launched four months ago with the aim of making sure that the elderly and prepared for the euro. In total 7'500 elderly people from 214 associations have taken part in the various theoretical projects. Over 100'000 school children have also been targeted and so too have the blind, Mesquida said. A special shop was set up in the Pueblo Espanyol yesterday for people to actually practice using the fictitious new coins and notes and get used to the feel of the new currency.

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