“Imagine being being tossed around at sea for close to 4 hours. Imagine being stuck out at sea, in an overcrowded boat taking in water – in freezing, cold winds.
As we are heading into a new year, the weather is quickly getting colder. On the Turkish side, where the boats leave from, it even started snowing today. In Skala Sikamineas, the temperature is expected to drop below 0°C tonight. At the lighthouse in Korakas, even colder.
But even in the most horrific conditions, we always expect that some boats might come. Because worse weather and more dangerous conditions equals bigger discounts from the smugglers. For some people, this is the only time they can afford trying to make it to Europe.
This morning a boat came to the camp after being tossed around at sea for 4 hours. Eventually they found their way to us, and we could instantly look after their needs. But, what they mostly need is a safe passage, and as long as it’s not provided, we will be there to give the refugees a warm welcome. No matter how cold the weather gets, our volunteers will be there waiting when they arrive. Winds or no winds.
Here are 10 things we do so if anything is in your skill set we would love to hear from you:
1. meet boats on landing and provide medical assistance and relief
2. provide free transport (paid by us) to MSF camp by villager’s pick ups in isolated and poorly accesible areas – this needs coordination
3. first response to information from United Rescues, ProActiva & our own network of villagers & signage on 15 beaches
4. infrastructure improvements and clean ups of inaccessible areas
5. casualty prevention planning & related projects & investments
6. run & stock our own clothes tent at MSF camp for upto 1000 refugees daily 7. give toys, water and snacks to kids & families and provide smiles
8. run a warehouse for northeastern lesvos on behalf of Lets Help Lesvos
9. break down so called ‘mafia arrangements’ exploiting refugees by bringing on board locals/villagers
10. laugh, cry and have fun together and work with many different fantastic volunteer groups !
We need low maintenace people who need VERY little direction – our core value is to Kill The Admin (every penny we raise will go directly towards our efforts on the ground) and for sure you wont receive masses of instruction manuals.
Here is how it works; shared accommodation in our volunteers house, 4×4 vehicles, petrol and phone SIM and top up costs are all provided. We ask for a contribution of 20-25 euros per day for this, all you need to to do is turn up and everything is arranged. Your 20-25 euros a day goes into a cashpot in the house (controlled by volunteers) which funds the villager’s 4×4 pick up’s petrol and transportation costs; anything left can be spent directly on refugees (bread, water etc.) With this set fee you can plan the financial side of your trip very easily and we recommend that you fundraise for these costs on the basis that it will in fact pay to transport many cold, wet and traumatised refugees up a 10km mountain path.
Please contact us – in the space of two months we have grown into one of the major providers of rescue, relief and transport in north east Lesvos (Korakas to Palios) and we are now in partnership with Medecins Sans Frontier and need a little bit of help
If you can’t volunteer, consider donating money to Rando’s gofundme campaign.
Supporting his campaign is money well spent. No overhead costs, everything is transparent and your money goes directly to the refugees.