We’d like to tell you a little about our story and the great people involved in these projects
Art 4 WarKids
I have just come back from Samos and was shocked in my volunteering to see how the children there had nothing. They arrived with wet clothes which we changed the best we could and tried to find them a small snack till the daily small cup of food the locals arrange.
I set up a few workshops in my time there and did regular cinema nights. These were so well received and made the whole atmosphere in the port camp and detention centre one that for a time broke the memories of war.
When I had to leave back to the UK for my own toddlers and furthering pregnancy the port Doctor confided in me that our project was was the most necessary thing after water, food, clothes and shelter.
The refugees laughed saying the hour I showed them Mr Bean had been the first time they’d laughed as a group since before their troubles.
I hope to direct any money raised from our half of the funding into securing a tent which will hold creative things for the kids, such as toys and a smaller projector so they can have time being children again.
The detention centre in Samos is without a name and detains 1200 people with growing numbers. The door is now open as the authorities can no longer feed them and it was built for 300 people. They have no money for ferry tickets and/or have lost their papers on the journey. Some of the 500+ kids have been there for months. I was able to access them and for the first time do a huge creative workshop and cinema night. Even the adults had tears of joy.
The tent space I will secure in the port will reach out to the detention centre as much as the authorities will allow.
The Refugee Community Kitchen
Steve Bedlam (Events), Sam Jones (Chef), Paula Gallardo (Doula), Bobbie Greenish (Teacher) and Janie Mac (Activist and Lecturer) are the coordinators of this humanitarian mission.
We have seen tens of thousands of people forced to leave their homes and risking theirs and their families lives to find refuge with us in the West.
As a result, we are pulling together our skills and those of our resourceful friends, and anyone else drawn to help, to set up a communal kitchen in the Calais refugee camps and other similar camps in Europe.
Our aim is to feed where food is needed, to build where we can build and to give our support to the volunteers on the ground. As winter sets in, we can really help by providing hot nourishing food on a daily basis. At present, many of the camps do not have basic facilities and many are going hungry.