Over the last few weeks, we’ve heard about Syrian refugees dying from the cold. Many of us had trouble sleeping at night knowing that refugees in neighboring countries were dying from something preventable, which most of us take for granted. We decided to take action and actually do something about it. That’s when we started the #GiveSyria campaign.
Working with the Red Crescent, we set up a dozen collection points across the UAE to start collecting donations in the form of new winter clothing, shoes, jackets and blankets. The response we got left us lost for words. People were incredibly generous and soon most of our collection points had several trucks full of donations! (Countless people tried to get in contact with us, so we apologize if we missed any calls or were not able to accommodate all volunteers). People even donated items in bulk. What was donated added up to more than a thousand brand new blankets, and several thousand articles of clothing and shoes!
Many companies and organizations also helped us make this project a reality. The Red Crescent helped us with all the legalities and made sure the donations go to where they are most needed, The Studio Dubai in Courtyard set up their own area for people to drop items off, Sebsports provided us with transportation vehicles, Basfoor Trading contributed by providing us with thermal blankets, Techno Power allowed us to use their warehouse as a collection hub, and Namshi gave an amazing 20% off to all customers that bought items on their site to be donated to the campaign.
Yesterday (December 21st 2013), we gathered all of our donations in a warehouse in Ras Al Khor (which the owner was gracious enough to let us use) and started shipping them off to the Red Crescent. We started gathering items in the warehouse at 9am and we didn’t finish clearing everything out until nearly 9pm. By the end of the night, we dropped 100’s of boxes off at the Red Crescent. They were so overwhelmed by the amount of items we collected, that a whole container was dedicated to Syrian Refugees with only our donations!
What at first looked like a logistical nightmare (thousands of unsorted items that needed to be sorted, packed in boxes, and then shipped out) was soon turned into an amazing success story thanks to the dozens of volunteers that sacrificed a full day of their weekend to help us without asking for anything in return. To them we are eternally grateful.
The Flea4Charity Team