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Refugee donations from Stratford to be sent to Lesbos

Wellesbourne Airfield
Wellesbourne Airfield

However Sandy has now organised for the items to be taken by the Haroon Jahan Foundation a charitable organisation set up by Tariq Jahan, who helped restore calm to the streets of Birmingham following the death of his son Haroon during the riots of 2011.

He was presented with a Pride of Britain Award in 2011 in recognition of his courage during the riots.

The supplies will now be sent to Lesbos, which has received large numbers of refugees making the dangerous crossing across the Mediterranean, instead of to Calais.

Tariq said: “We’ll do this trip 100 times over if we have to, we need people to know that the people of Britain care about what’s going on.

“There is so much suffering going on in the world, when people see those images of the refugees they can feel that suffering, they are in desperate, desperate need and I think people in Britain realise that and their mind set is changing.

“We only started collecting yesterday but we’ve already filled 3 or 4 vans and we hope to have around 10-15 full by the time we set off. We have a Labour MP coming along with us and hopefully we can bring some medics as well.

“The way Stratford has contributed has been very good, these items will save lives.”

Tariq, who took part in a previous aid mission to Syria in 2013, said the foundation has been working closely with agencies on the ground in Lesbos to identify their specific needs.

Sandy added: “I didn’t know how much I would get, I just put the call out there and it has been amazing, I never anticipated getting this much stuff or this much help.

“We’ve got all we can take at the moment and our main focus is on the logistics of getting it out there now.

“I have met some lovely people doing this, I’ve learnt a lot and it’s been very heartening.”

Earlier this month Stratford District Council agreed on a four point approach to help ease the refugee crisis.

Measures proposed included looking at if vacant holiday accommodation could be used to house refugees, how it could work with other councils to help and acting as a collection centre.

The district council also held a dress down day in aid of Syrian refugees last Friday raising £346.

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