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Help Refugee funded community centre in Khora is providing swaths of services for refugees

We are so proud to work with our implementing partners at Khora Community Centre.

“Six days a week, Khora provides refugees and migrants with a swath of services, including dentistry, information, legal services, language classes, lessons for children and internet, among others. In the future, they hope to also provide basic medical services for people who cannot afford it.”

Read Al Jezzera’s article on the irreplaceable work Khora are completing daily.

Help us to support long term projects like this by donating using the button above.

 

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Northern France – Latest Needs

Hi, thanks for your help!

 

Priority Items: things we are in desperate need of

S+M Men’s Joggers/Trousers (28” and 30”)

Torches and Lamps

Tents (only 1-2 man pop-ups)
Thick Blankets

Sleeping Bags
Roll Mats
S+M Men’s Waterproof Jackets
S Men’s Hoodies/Warm Jumpers
Trainers/Walking Boots size 40-44
S+M Men’s Underwear
Men’s warm winter accessories – hats, gloves, Scarves, Socks
Conditioner
Deodorant

Toilet Paper
Unlocked mobile phones with chargers

Hand warmers

Size 6 nappies only

 

Everything Else

 

Men

  • S, M  waterproof and non-waterproof jackets

  • Trainers especially sizes 41 to 43, and ideally black

  • S, M long-sleeved tops, jumpers and hoodies (The warmer the better)

  • S, M  tracksuit bottoms/Jeans

  • Waterproof trousers

  • Socks (thick and thin)

  • S, M new underwear (not Y-fronts)

  • Gloves

  • Hats

  • Scarves

 

Youth (boys):

  • Tracksuit bottoms – for ages 12-17

  • Jeans – for ages 12-17

  • Underwear – for ages 12-17 or men’s size small

  • Hoodies – sizes small and medium

  • Trainers (ideally black) – 40, 41, 42, 43.

 

Childrens Items

We are currently oversupplied with children’s clothes and toys, there are other charities,  many closer to home who would really benefit from the donations of these items.

 

Hygiene

  • Toilet paper

  • Men’s razors

  • Shaving foam

  • Deodorant (men’s)

  • Shampoo

  • Conditioner

 

Food:

Material food donations are much more sustainable and logistically easier to arrange, so if you have funds available and are planning a delivery to the Auberge/ Help Refugees warehouse, the most needed items (most urgent at top)

 

Oranges
Smoked Paprika
cucumber
tomato
pepper
onions
garlic
fresh chilli
sea salt

olive oil
turmeric
lemon juice
oats
golden syrup
honey
dried fruit
cayenne pepper

leeks
celery
pasta
apples
aubergines
courgettes
butter
bicarbonate of soda
tomato puree
ketchup
mayonnaise
white vinegar
tahini
black pepper
jam/marmalade
hot chocolate

coffee
bin bags
washing up liquid
plastic gloves
disinfectant spray
potatos
tins of white beans

 

Please bring ring pull tops and make sure everything is in date!

 

Warehouse and Office Needs:

  • Large rubble sacks and 80L

  • 130L, 110L, 80L strong bags

  • Orange tape

  • Brown parcel tape

  • Serang wrap

  • Permanent markers

  • Thick rubber bands

  • A4 lever arch folders

  • Polythene pockets (for lever arch files)

  • A4 printer paper

  • White board markers

 

Miscellaneous:

  • Thick blankets

  • Sleeping bags

  • Roll mats

  • Whiteboards

  • Backpacks

  • Fire extinguishers

  • 3 sims for phones (£1 each, have to be purchased in the UK)

  • Lyca sims

  • Metal kettles

  • Plastic/metal cups, mugs, plates and cutlery

  • Lights and lanterns

  • Unlocked smart phones/power banks

 

SORTING GUIDELINES:

 

Please note that your donations MUST be sorted – if any items are damaged, soiled or inappropriate for the camp, they will create an enormous amount of waste, which delays vital aid reaching the refugees. We cannot accept deliveries that are unsorted, as our volunteers can be snowed under the mountain of unsorted donations. Please try to only bring 3 or 4 types of items in your delivery. However, we understand that this is not always possible, and we still appreciate your help. To efficiently sort your donations, please separate them into type eg blankets separate from clothing. Clothing and shoes will need to be separated (and then packed and accordingly labelled) by gender, size and type. For instance men’s M jumpers separate from the S. Women’s size 39 boots separate from women’s size 40 trainers, waterproof coats, separate from non-waterproof coats.

This saves the incredibly hard-working warehouse volunteers so much time and allows us to get the donations to the refugees considerably more quickly and more efficiently. We are currently sufficiently stocked up for quite some time with women and children’s items, except for the items mentioned in the priority list. If you need more guidelines on how to sort, please email me back and I will be happy to help.

You can also donate to our Calais and Dunkerque page here

If you are interested in supporting our non food item distribution teams with items such as tents, clothing, sleeping bags, kitchenware etc, please donate here.

Refugee Community Kitchen provides a warm lunch to the residents of the Dunkirk camp every day. They need money to buy the ingredients.  You can donate to their work here.

The Calais Woodyard saw and chop firewood and deliver it to the residents of the Dunkirk camp, to cook and to heat their living spaces. They need money to buy sawblades and for fuel. To donate to their incredible work, please donate generously here.

If you wish to send Emergency Supplies by post, please consider our wishlist at http://www.leisurefayre.com, where we have secured a generous 20% discount and fast postage with the distributor, who sends them directly to us as soon as possible!

For more guidelines, please check this Donations page on Calaidipedia: http://www.calaidipedia.co.uk/donations

And as always, please email calaisdonations@gmail.com for any questions! 

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Donald Trump has ordered a block on refugees for several months, with a temporary limit on immigration from several Muslim-majority countries

 

Donald Trump has signed executive orders that temporarily limit immigration from Syria and several other majority-Muslim countries, and block all refugees to the US for several months whilst the vetting process is strengthened.

Help Refugees are deeply concerned, refugees do not have months to wait – they are feeling war, exploitation and persecution.

Nearly two thirds of all refugees resettled in 2015 were accepted by the US, so the impact of this will be devastating.

Refugees are by definition people seeking sanctuary from some of the most horrific circumstances and it is the duty of compassionate and progressive nations to accept their fair share. Banning refugees on the basis of their religious beliefs is abhorrent

Halting resettlement of refugees will not, contrary to Trump’s assertions, make America safer. On the contrary it will force people into the hands of traffickers and make the vigorous systems currently in place to vet refugees entering the US completely defunct.

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Wrongly Classifying child refugees as adults is costing the UK millions of pounds.

New evidence has come to light that wrongly classifying child refugees as adults is costing the UK millions of pounds.

The news, which was broken today by Buzzfeed, showed that the government has lost more than 260 age dispute cases since 2010, at a cost of over 4 million pounds, and that the failings are leaving vulnerable children in limbo.

They said “Croydon council, which runs the only Home Office asylum-seeker screening unit in the country, provided the figures under freedom of information laws.

One source with experience of working on hundreds of age assessments claimed councils in the UK are overstating the ages of asylum-seekers in order to cut costs.

Gulwali Passarlay, who entered the UK aged 13, had his age disputed for almost two years. He said “I felt worthless and unvalued. I attempted to commit suicide twice because I thought there was no point to life. I was called a liar, a criminal.”

Help Refugees remain deeply concerned that vulnerable refugee children, many of whom have endured severe hardships, are having their ages disputed resulting in them being denied their basic rights to child protection, adequate child services and education.

To read the full story click here

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Thousands of Lives At Risk (including hundreds of children) In Serbia As Temperatures Plummet

The freezing temperatures in Serbia are putting thousands of people’s lives at risk, including up to 300 children, the youngest of whom is 8 years old.

Temperatures are at a bitter low of -16C, and yet 1,500 refugees are still sleeping in abandoned warehouses with no heating, showers or toilets and many without proper warm winter clothing. The one hot meal they are receiving a day only comes after hours of queuing in the freezing cold.

Our Serbian spokesperson Alice Aedy who is currently in Belgrade said “the conditions here are unimaginable. No toilets or hot water. They feel that they’re living like animals.”

One refugee living in the warehouse told us “In Europe you wouldn’t let your dog’s sleep outside in this weather. Why are we being treated like this?”

Ezat, a refugee from Afghanistaion who is just 27 and has been in the warehouse for many months, added “the situation here is unbelievable. You can’t imagine it. It is something I have never seen in my life. If you told someone I am staying outside for the whole winter in -16 degrees, they would not believe you”

Alongside the abandoned warehouse around 1,000 others are living in makeshift shelters in Belgrade, facing conditions their bodies are unequipped to battle with frostbite becoming common. The only feasible way to battle the cold, creating fires out of any material available – many times plastic – is causing respiratory problems from the toxic smoke.

In the last week Help Refugees have been funding emergency aid and food and buying winter clothing in Belgrade but it is not enough, we need your help, this is an urgent appeal for funds – help us help them and donate to us at http://bit.ly/HelpRefugeesDonate today.

No attempts have been made by the Serbian authorities to relocate people to heated accommodation or to identify the most vulnerable, such as the sick, elderly or children. Join us by signing the petition calling for Serbia to provide shelter to refugees and migrants in freezing Belgrade- http://bit.ly/2jy7pYK

Photo credit: @aliceaedy, Help Refugees 

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We are educating and empowering children in our school in Lebannon

We are educating and empowering children and we could not do it without you!

With the help of our incredible supporters we have funded a school in Ouzai, Lebannon giving these refugee children a semblance of normal life. The school gives them a place of sanctuary, a feeing of safety and security, as well as a place for them to develop their sense of self – on top of the clear benefit of an education.

Without access to education, the innocent children of the refugee crisis are being damned to a future without optimism or prospect. We want to inspire hope, inspire these children to grow above and beyond the situation forced on them by powers much larger than them.

Help us to continue shaping the next generation by donating using the red button in the right hand corner above

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Syrian mothers have had funding for their life-saving kidney dialysis cut – help us fund their treatment

Due to budget constraints the Lebanese Ministry of Public Health has announced plans to stop providing financial support to Syrians who need haemodialysis treatment (kidney dialysis) after today (Monday 17th January).

So far 27 people in the Bekaa Valley whose lives depend on receiving this treatment twice or three times weekly have been identified by UNHCR. Most are women and, like Samaher, who we meet in this film, most have children and must work hard to make enough money to feed and care for them.

Together with our implementing partner in Lebanon, Salam LADC, we have committed to doing everything we can to help keep these people alive until an NGO, INGO or government assumes this responsibility. 

Each dialysis treatment costs approximately $130
The monthly cost per person is approximately $1600

Everyone has had their last treatment from the government so we need to raise the first $43,200 as a matter of urgency to ensure no-one misses any of their treatment as this would be life threatening.

Here is the link to the fundraising campaign page which is launching today. Please take a look at the first in a series of films where we meet some of the patients affected by the Ministry’s decision.

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25,800 unaccompanied children arrived in Italy in 2016, says new UNICEF report

We were disheartened, but not surprised, that Unicef’s recent report revealed that 25,800 unaccompanied or separated children arrived in Italy in 2016 – more than double the 12,360 in 2015.

It’s clear to see that the “push factors” (such as the rise of Boko Haram in Nigeria and the civil war in Libya) driving children to take these perilous journeys (just this weekend 100 people drowned whilst crossed the Mediterranean Sea) is so much stronger than any “pull factor” could be. Closing borders simply isn’t the solution. Families would never take the decision to put their children at risk in this way if there was any other alternative.

These children, who mostly arrived from Eritrea, Egypt, the Gambia and Nigeria, remain incredibly vulnerable to trafficking, sexual exploitation and abuse and we join Unicef in calling for immediate measures to be put in place to protect them.

Part of the solution is for the Italian and UK governments to speed up the process of identifying those children eligible under Dubs Amendment (an amendment to the Immigration bill which passed in 2016 offering sanctuary to unaccompanied refugee children) and under Dublin III (family reunification laws) and bringing them to sanctuary in the UK swiftly.

Help Refugees have recently started funding work to help protect refugees arriving in Italy, with a special focus on unaccompanied children, and we will continue our advocacy work with Lord Dubs and Safe Passage. We look forward to sharing more news with you shortly about our work in Italy.

Photo Credit: Middle East Eye

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Lord Alf Dubs Tells Channel 4 News “UK Has Only Taken 6 Unaccompanied Children From Greece – we must do more”

Last week , together with Safe Passage, we took Lord Alf Dubs (who tabled the Dubs Amendment for unaccompanied refugee children) to Greece to see the dire conditions thousands of refugee children are being forced to live in. We were also there to meet with Greek ministers and continue our advocacy around the Dubs amendment and Dublin reunification for unaccompanied minors from Greece. So far there have been only 6 reunification transfers to the UK (5 through the Safe Passage programme) and none under his amendment to protect those children who are truly alone.

Watch him here on Chanel 4 news talking about the trip and calling for the UK to offer sanctuary to “several hundred” vulnerable unaccompanied refugee children, whilst also speeding up family reunification processes.

We would like to thank Lord Dubs for his continued dedication, passion and commitment to helping refugee children suffering. As a former child refugee himself who escaped the holocaust in 1939 and arrived in the UK under Kindertransport he understands more deeply than most what these children are going through.

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Refugees Sleep On Streets Of Paris In Sub Zero Temperatures as Police Confiscate their sleeping bags

Hundreds of refugees in Paris are sleeping outdoors – between traffic lanes, in gutters and on the streets –  despite sub zero temperatures over the past few days, set to drop to -6 degrees celsius next week.

Volunteers we work, alongside Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) report that police have been harrassing refugees late at night, tear gassing them and taking their sleeping bags away despite the freezing weather. So far MSF have had to treat 8 people for hypothermia.

Paris is the 5th richest city in the world, people who have escaped from war, persecution and poverty should not be subjected to these horrific conditions, sleeping outside in freezing temperatures. With the city’s only refugee reception centre completely overcrowding and around 100 to 150 new people arriving there each day, we call on the mayor of Paris, the state and large NGOs to find solutions and for refugees to be treated with more dignity.

Help Refugees has sent emergency funding to volunteers in Pairs to purchase sleeping bags and warm clothing and our team in the Calais warehouse are also offering support.

We will continue to support the teams and refugees in Paris – if you’d like to donate we would welcome your help.

Photo: Phillippe Lopez for Reuters

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