St Albans campaign for Syrian refugees celebrates hitting target

Liz Needham, STaR volunteer helping build racking for food donations.

Liz Needham, STaR volunteer helping build racking for food donations. - Credit: Archant

The organiser of a Syrian refugee fundraising effort has thanked the community for their donations, which will provide around 300 food parcels for the Calais camp.

Liz Needham, who set up StAlbans4Refugees and has already made a trip to Calais alongside the Herts Advertiser with donations from the district, set a target of £1,500 to fund food parcels to the camp.

The total has nearly reached the £1,700 mark, enough to fund about 300 food parcels, but the next task is to source boxes to hold the supplies.

Liz said: “Due to the incredible generosity of the residents of St Albans, StAlbans4Refugees (StAR) has raised the funds needed to provide at least 300 foodpacks to the refugees in the ‘Calais Jungle’.

She continued: “We would like to ask another couple of favours if we may? We will need boxes to pack the food into. Ideally, we would like 300 boxes of the type used to contain A4 copying paper, along with their lids.”

Following the trip Liz made to Calais in January she also noticed that many people delivered food packages alongside messages and drawings.

She said: “For those who can’t afford to donate money, writing a letter or getting kids to make drawings and pictures is a perfect opportunity to get involved.

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“The conditions in the camp are such that any little bit of comfort in the form of a supportive note or picture are so appreciated.

“The boxes are also important as it means that the donations can go straight to the camp instead of having to be sorted through in a warehouse.”

Liz hopes that StAlbans4Refugees will be making a trip in late January or early February and is keen to gather the boxes soon.

Any more donations would also be welcome. She continued: “When we went to the camp we were there for what, 10 or 15 minutes handing out donations? Wouldn’t it be fabulous if we could be there for an hour handing out 500 boxes, wouldn’t it be great?”

The money donated will go towards creating food parcels, which Liz will buy and put together in bulk. They are likely to contain juice, cooking oil, tinned meat, sugar, tea, coffee, salt, rice and tinned veg/fruit.

If you would like to donate, click here.

All letters and drawings should be sent to Sophie Crockett, Herts Advertiser, 7 French Row, St Albans, Hertfordshire, AL3 5DL