Around Christmas 2013, Samara, a Christian Mum from Brighton saw reports of Syrian refugee children in snow covered camps wearing flip flops and summer clothes in the snow These were the clothes they had been wearing when they fled their homes from IS and they had nothing else. Samara was moved to tears by this and set up Samaras Aid appeal in October 2014 with all the logistics it entails using aid partners in Syria and Iraq to get practical aid from the UK to the refugees that really needs it. Samaras approach is for us to give what we can-sharing the good clothes, shoes, money and other essentials that we have with those that have nothing.
Following the last 2 years of successful aid collections in Bearsted of clothes, shoes and bedding for refugees in Iraq, we would like your help again this Easter and Spring period. Last year Bearsted residents, coordinated by Jacqui Elliott, sent 149 banana boxes of aid donations plus 21 bags of bedding and 6 wheelchairs. As you are aware from the media, there continues to be a massive need for aid and you can make a practical difference to the refugees fleeing from IS and the Assad regime in both Syria and Iraq.
From 2nd April until 13th May in Bearsted and Hollingbourne, we will be collecting excellent condition 2nd hand and new clothes for summer and winter, shoes, bedding, wheelchairs, and crutches and new hygiene care items.
Samara is also now supporting 3 Emergency Hospitals and small medical facilities in Syria therefore medical equipment and donations towards the new hospitals are much needed. Many hospitals in Syria have been destroyed in the Syrian war and one of Samaras hospitals has been attacked by IS. Samaras’ emergency hospitals and mobile hospital partnering with Dr A and his medical teams offer hope and life to the people of Syria living in a war zone.
Please see the Samara Aid flyer for more information on practical things that you can donate, knowing that the aid organised by Samara and sent from Bearsted the last 2 years has been given to the refugees in need in Iraq and Syria. Since 2014, Samara has now sent 69 lorries and containers of aid to Iraq and Syria. Aid has been delivered to the people of Aleppo earlier in February too after taking 2 months to organise. To see photos of the aid delivered last year, visit facebook.com/winterclothesappeal
For those of you that can knit, handmade blankets and knitted clothes in bright colours are also needed – please would someone help finish some squares for a blanket partly made up last year.
Holy Cross Church – Classic and New Way, St Mary’s Church Thurnham, Bearsted Methodist Church, St Peters Catholic Church along with Thurnham and Roseacre schools will be promoting this Appeal in addition to being in the Bearsted Parish Magazine. We are hoping for other churches to join in too.
Jacqui already has confirmation of 4 storage areas for donations this year however we would appreciate volunteers for the sorting and boxing of donations days on 29th April and 13th May and transport to the boxed aid to Samaras’ Worthing warehouse around 10th June.
Samaras Aid Appeal values are Christian Love, Action, Unity and Sharing – we can make a difference to desperate refugees in need by working together!
Samaras Aid Appeal is a registered charity in England and Wales (charity number 1171707)
Items for collection from Hollingbourne should be left at the back of All Saints’ Church or in the kitchen if it is open. More details are available from Jim Findlay (Churchwarden) Tel 880244.