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Elmbridge CAN volunteers deliver aid to Calais
12 June 2017
Elmbridge CAN team members, Verity Wislocki and Jeannie Tweedie, made another trip to Calais this weekend, delivering donated food, clothing, shoes and hygiene packs to refugees.
Organised by Verity in partnership with Care4Calais, the team took a large van full of donated shoes, sleeping bags, toiletries, hygiene packs, clothing and £1,600 worth of freshly purchased groceries directly to refugees in need.
We would like to thank everyone who donated to make this possible – from cash donations and boxes of clothing, to sponsoring the van.
As well as delivering critical supplies, Verity and Jeannie volunteered with Care4Calais for 2 days – giving out food and water to refugees and sorting socks and clothing in the warehouse.
CALAIS HAS NOT 'GONE AWAY'
There's a common misconception that the situation in Calais has gone away following the demolition of the Jungle refugee camp last year. But thousands of refugees and hundreds of unaccompanied children remain in Calais in a worse state than before. People are sleeping in nearby woods or behind huge mounds of rocks in a quarry-style industrial estate, without tents or shelter (Independent, May 2017).
Elmbridge CAN co-founder, Jeannie Tweedie, reflects on this second visit to the camp:
“It was amazing but sobering to be back in Calais. The needs of refugees there remain dire. We heaved boxes, we sorted socks, we distributed water and cereal bars and gave encouraging smiles to young lads. I felt fortunate and deeply privileged, not saintly in any shape or form. The only time I nearly cried was when giving an extra apple to a two year old – a tiny gesture in a world that has not been friendly to him.
I’m proud to be part of a team that sees the need and tries to makes a difference. Huge thanks to those who made it possible – to Verity for organising and all those who have generously donated.”
HOW YOU CAN HELP
If you want to make a donation to support refugees in Calais please visit www.care4calais.org. Or if you want to help refugees locally, find out more about volunteering with Elmbridge CAN.
The team arriving in Calais
Image credit: Elmbridge CAN