The current dreadful refugee and migrant crisis has been described as one of the biggest humanitarian disasters in Europe since the Second World War.
Myself and two friends, Will Rogers and Dan Stevens, are collecting a load of equipment to help people sleeping rough in Calais, France, as the winter approaches.
This will include gloves, socks, wellies, ponchos, tarpaulins, cooking pots and tents.
We also want to help the makeshift school at the camp by supplying dictionaries, phrasebooks and notebooks.
About the Project
There are around 3,000 men, women and children – from many different countries and for many different reasons – living in wretched conditions.
The UN Special Representative on Migration, Peter Sutherland, this week
described the makeshift camp as a “truly dreadful place” and an “indictment on society”.
He added: “I cannot easily recover from the shock of Calais.”
Without regard to any political or religious affiliations, nor to any particular position on immigration, the three of us believe these are people who are in great distress and whom we can easily help.
There is little or no official assistance for the migrants, so volunteers in Calais are struggling to feed, clothe and keep warm the large number of people living in the camps.
The three of us will pay all the costs of transport to Calais using our own vehicle. We are planning to travel in early November, by which time we hope to have sufficient supplies to fill the vehicle. Will has already made donation trips to Calais a number of times, so has a very good idea of what items are most desperately required (many thanks if you contributed previously).
The picture above was taken by Will last week and shows the makeshift school at the camp. They were extremely pleased to receive a number of English/French and English/Arabic dictionaries and were keen to receive more – in particular English/Pashtun – as well as notebooks.
Once at Calais, we intend to transfer everything to the school and to local volunteer groups, who are best placed to distribute it.
We are seeking contributions towards purchasing items as listed above. Please consider making a contribution – just £5 will buy five pairs of gloves – and make a real difference to the people who are suffering.