Mercy missions to help refugees

Volunteers get the donations ready to be sent to help refugees in Kos and other areas
Volunteers get the donations ready to be sent to help refugees in Kos and other areas

Shocking reports on the plight of refugees coming into Europe have prompted action from Aylesbury folk – who have set to work to do all they can to help.

Aylesbury’s Give to Charity group, Aylesbury Refugee Care and Berryfields Church set about collecting useful items which can be used by refugees at the weekend.

The drive, led by Darryl Hood, Ahtiq Raja, and Gareth Lane, vicar of the church saw scores of volunteers get together to help sort the donations.

Rev Lane said: “We are now in the process of getting it sorted accordingly before arranging to have it shipped in a small three tonne truck to Kos, and other places where its needed.

“Mike Smith, town council leader and mayor Allison Harrison also lent a hand getting the bags put into the vans.”

Darryl Hood added: “We’ve had an incredible response, people are still approaching us to say they want to give more to help.

“Thanks must also go to the Aylesbury Box Company, who donated 200 packing boxes.

“We have now filled all of those and we’re only about halfway through all the items given.”

And mum-of-two Tracy Claydon is leading her own charity drive, and plans to travel to Calais in October to deliver much needed supplies.

Tracy, 40, and husband Steve 43, who live in Aylesbury, have set up the Aylesbury Donations For Refugees Facebook page.

And together with their daughters Felicity, 14 and Fay aged five they are busy collecting items to help those in need.

Tracy said: “We are just an ordinary family who want to do something.

“People are being labelled, but at the end of the day they are just ordinary families like us who are trying to have better lives.

“Unfortunately that’s not happening at the moment.”

And in the week that an image of little Aylan Kurdi, the toddler who tragically died in the sea off Kos shocked the world, Tracy says the appeal is more important than ever.

She said: “It broke my heart to see that picture, but he didn’t die in vain.

“Everyone has seen that picture and has been outraged, it sadly took that for people to take notice.

“I don’t want to make it political, but if little is being done by the government, at least we can show people that we can get up and do something to help.”

Type in Aylesbury Donations for Refugees on Facebook to find out more.

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