Friends, colleagues, contacts, I have an unashamed ask of you. Show a little bit of basic human kindness.
I'm taking some unpaid leave from work in order to volunteer with humanitarian crisis in Lesvos Greece in January. I’ve been following the situation closely and feel compelled to offer help.
Its Christmas, we’re all hard up, we’re asked every day to help another cause and life doesn’t get any easier right? But it’s got to be better than those arriving on Lesvos today?
You’ll be aware of the crisis situation, although it fluctuates daily, that there are still 1000s of refugees arriving with nothing on the island of Lesvos daily. Many are Syrian, Iraqi, Afghan and are fleeing terror. This is the largest European refugee crisis since WWII.
Most that read this will never know what that terror feels like, I will never know.
I do know that some arrive having lost entire families, self-respect and their hope, only to be smuggled across rough waters risking their lives. The death toll is rising through this journey yet they keep coming because there is no alternative. These people are only a 4 hour flight away.
I have no political view on this other than if when they arrive basic shelter, food and clothes can be offered then surely we should at least ensure this and not leave many out in the cold. If it was our friends and family what lengths would we go to?
There is some fantastic and essential aid work taking place on the island but of course it’s not enough, from reports I am receiving each day many are going cold and hungry for days on end and it’s not going to get any warmer.
So, I have self-funded and just completed a Red Cross first aid course and a crash course with RedR in refugee crisis management to best prepare myself to offer operational help. Essentially I’ll be doing whatever is required and providing hands on project management and volunteer management to existing organisations out there.
As well as any skills I might bring what is also needed are supplies. I am self-funding my trip (flights accom and food) and I’m trying to raise £2000 to pay for refugee supplies on arrival which will be bought on the island where possible to boost the local economy, which is already in very poor shape. The need changes daily by what the warehouses’ receive, it might be:
- Water bottled
- Blankets/ Foil blankets
- Packaged food
- Sleeping bags
Some money will go towards 250Euros to part rent a car to do much needed driving between camps with donations.
This site takes 5% of what is received so if you feel more comfortable to send me a CHQ I will use it accordingly. Please message me for details.
If you were going to put £5 in a charity pot this month or even send me a Christmas card would you donate here instead?
There is no pressure here and no expectations but equally I have to ask and I promise to keep you updated with where the funds are spent and the difference it makes.
Thank you in advance for your generosity and kindness.