Post date: 31-Aug-2016 17:54:16

The first container load of aid for Syria is mapped out and almost ready to go- filled with the INCREDIBLE returns from Calais. We have unlimited funding for as many containers as we can send (pretty much) .... I promised I'd do my very best with the returns and thanks to some amazing team work I can. It's taken an incredible lot of work to pull together the contacts to make this work. Definitely not just mine.

So here are just a FEW of the projects that are going in or that have happened from the stuff.

All of the scrap clothes (stained/ripped and not repairable/wearable) that are made out of fleece, flannelette, cotton and dense wool are in an incredible pack with templates and sewing machines for Syrian widows and single parents to make their own washable sanitary pads (they have the facilities to use these - we checked). So that included pyjamas and dressing gowns that had been pre-loved.

The shoes that were VERY dirty (there are lots) - we've had AWESOME volunteers cleaning them and pairing them then packing into aid area for container. They are SAVED. It cost £20 for some turtle wax liquid for leather car interiors - some warm water and some microfibre cloths.

The shrunken woollen jumpers have gone to local craft groups to use as fundraiser felt items.

The BOBBLY JUMPERS that I hated passionately and begged not to see have become dog beds for animals in shelters who have separation anxiety. Lol ... true. She doesn't wash them because the dogs need the smell (awkward lol).

The dreadful stained T-shirts that even cash for clothes would reject lol are being made into patchwork dresses.

We've had three container experts come to the store today and they have pointed out certain items we were selling were definitely suitable for Syria - so we've pulled 2 x one tonne bags of stuff off the rails.

I'm so so pleased and grateful that the suitable stuff STILL gets to go to refugees and not sent as cash for clothes.

We've now got the support locally and the systems to take a full lorry of returns a week to redistribute the aid.

Please please think before taking things NOT on the list for Calais - they are very clear about their needs. You can drop stuff not on the list at ours or any other warehouse that sends containers to other areas - take the pressure OFF Calais and the incredible team who work so incredibly hard to deliver exactly what Calais needs.