A Borehamwood-based charity has appealed for money to truck gifts and provisions to refugee children in camps in Kurdistan and Greece.
Goods for Good, founded by a Jewish woman who previously distributed surplus stock for World Jewish Relief, said this week it was “answering an SOS call for help” but needed funding for the ten-ton lorries to take the donated goods to the camps.
The charity, which sources excess stock from retailers but has to pay for the transport, cited an example last week of a truck in Macedonia that was loaded with 2,500 duvets for refugees but could not be dispatched for lack of funds.
“This is a busy period and it costs about £4,000 to send a truck to Greece and about £6,500 to Kurdistan,” said Rosalind Bluestone, who said the charity had already delivered 120,000 toys and humanitarian items in recent weeks.
“It’s Chanukah now and soon it will be Christmas, so this is a time for generosity and giving. Those we are helping are traumatised by war. We have the goods but we need help to pay for their transport. Trucks carry 25 pallets so each transport has a huge impact.”
Bluestone said Goods for Good, which has delivered £15 million worth of supplies since its formation in 2014, was working with the Norwegian charity Northern Lights in Greece and the Bring Hope Humanitarian Foundation in Kurdistan, a poor region of five million people now struggling to cope with the influx of two million refugees.
She said they were now aiming to transport toys to bring some festive cheer to the children, many of whom are orphans, but the priority was still on basic items.
“These mothers are without basics like shampoo or blankets, or shoes for their toddlers or nappies for their babies. It’s is unimaginable. It’s now winter and refugees are desperate for shoes, socks, hats, gloves, scarves, underwear… They rely on help from overseas.”
One truck last month delivered hundreds of pairs of men’s trainers, after volunteers saw how refugee fathers were getting jobs fishing and walking miles every day to access the facilities their families need, but didn’t have shoes.