The Jersey Calais Refugee Aid Group (JCRAG) has launched an urgent appeal for emergency aid to deliver to the ‘Jungle’ Refugee camp in Calais, following the threat by the French Government to clear the camp of its 10,000 refugees by the end of October.
With the demolition of the Calais Camp, all refugees, including families and unaccompanied children, will have to continue their uncertain journeys. Volunteers are committed to collecting and transporting specific supplies including trainers, winter boots, rucksacks, sleeping bags and warm winter jackets to northern France to support the people affected by this crisis. Collection points have been arranged to receive donations from Islanders. Those wishing to donate listed items can collect and deliver on Friday 21st & Saturday 22nd October at the Bridge Family Centre and at a central town location TBC. Appeals are being sent to schools and businesses to co-ordinate collections with the aim to deliver this aid before the end of October.
In the past 12 months JCRAG has collected aid and united groups of volunteers to provide donations and organize trips to deliver aid directly to Calais. Throughout the campaign JCRAG has adapted to the ever-changing conditions in the refugee camp. For this reason focusing on aid to those most in need has been a priority. Over 1000 minors in the camp are facing an uncertain future; they are part of an ever-growing group of children across Europe that runs the risk of becoming a ‘lost generation’.
Beth Gallichan, JCRAG committee member explains: “JCRAG is entirely run by volunteers. We rely on support from local people, schools and businesses to continue to raise awareness and provide aid to refugees who are most in need in Calais. We can only accept specific items so that people can transport their few belongings when they need to move. These are desperate times with appalling suffering for people fleeing hardship and war. As an island community we have proved that we are able to unite to provide hope, care and love by adapting and delivering aid direct to those most in need.”
The UK has so far failed the children who have arrived in Europe and are at extraordinary risk. Thousands of children are living in camps and makeshift shelters with strangers and adults, far away from their homes. Some live on the streets of eastern and southern European countries. Earlier this year the UK passed into law an amendment that allowed these children to be brought into the safety of the UK care system. Only a handful of children have since been relocated. With winter on the way, islanders are being encouraged to help make a miserable journey more bearable until a political solution is found. In many cases, this means simply providing a pair of suitable shoes.
What we need:
Shoes (priority men’s) Trainers and winter boots
Rucksacks and wheeled luggage
Tents (packed, clean, dry, no holes, poles not broken, all there)
Sleeping bags (3* season)
Wind up torches
WE CAN’T ACCEPT ANY ITEMS NOT ON THIS LIST
DOWNLOAD POSTER HERE-jcrag-urgent-appeal-poster-1