St Albans mums come together to raise for Syrian refugee crisis

St Albans Mums group raised money for Save the Children Syria Appeal and MOAS Front L-R Kathy Ede, G

St Albans Mums group raised money for Save the Children Syria Appeal and MOAS Front L-R Kathy Ede, Grace Lillywhite and Nadia Dickinson Back L-R Ruth Chadwick, Lizzie Cooil and Jackie Hislop - Credit: Archant

A group of mums who met on Facebook have come together and raised more than £8,500 for the refugee crisis - thousands more than their original target.

Five women from the St Albans Mums (SAMs) Facebook page organised a weekend of fundraising events after being moved by an image of young Syrian refugee boy washed up on a beach, who was later named as Aylan Kurdi.

After seeing the image, pilates instructor Grace Lillywhite posted on the group asking if there was anything she could do, and countless mums responded.

Six St Albans mums, Kathy Ede, Grace Lillywhite, Nadia Dickinson, Ruth Chadwick, Lizzie Cooil and Jackie Hislop ,subsequently organised a weekend of events and raised more than £8500 in total for the cause.

The money will go towards Save the Children’s child refugee appeal and Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS), which sends boats out on the Mediterranean rescuing people out of the sea.

Nadia Dickinson said: “We felt these charities represented Aylan and we hoped by supporting them we might be able to stop another little boy or girl meeting the same fate.

“Our total stands at over £8,500, our original target was £6,000- £1 for each of the mums on SAMs site - and we have been overwhelmed by this amount.

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“The journey of the last few weeks, and what a group of strangers have brought together by social media achieved has been fantastic to be a part of.”

A pamper evening, which included massages, manicures, Zumba, Pilates and more, raised more than £1,000.

Nearly 400 people attended a Family Fun Day at Trestle Arts Base in St Albans where a host of children’s classes were held throughout the day alongside performances from local musicians and stalls selling gifts, books jewellery and clothes.

Performers included winners of St Albans Got Talent, Purple Day, who wrote a song in support of the refugees.

Nadia added: “Thanks to the generous SAMs who turned up in huge numbers but also baked more cakes than I’ve ever seen.”

An eBay charity auction selling goods and vouchers from numerous companies that had a retail value of about £6,000 raised £2,500 for the appeal.

Nadia commented: ”We’d really like to say a huge thank you to the community and local businesses as we were supported by so many.”

If you would like to donate to the SAMs refugee appeal, visit or text CHLD66 £5 to 70700.