Seven Kings Mosque fundraisers travel to Calais camp to deliver aid

PUBLISHED: 11:09 15 October 2015 | UPDATED: 11:09 15 October 2015

A view of the migrant camp known as the new Jungle in Calais, France. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A view of the migrant camp known as the new Jungle in Calais, France. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire

PA Archive/PA Images

Members of a mosque have donated seven vans’ worth of items to help migrants camped in Calais.

A group of 50 people drove the 220 miles to Calais and back to deliver food, hygiene and clothes parcels to families after an appeal at Seven Kings Mosque.

It started with a group of friends wanting to support people in the makeshift camps known as The Jungle on the French coast, but the project grew into a much bigger scale and seven vans loaded with donations left from Seven Kings on Saturday at 5am.

Zubair Ibrahim, who co-ordinated the project, said: “We were going to go in three or four cars but now there are dozens. I am really overwhelmed and it is very encouraging.”

Posters were put up at the mosque in High Road, Seven Kings, and within a week donations flooded in.

Volunteers organised the donations into parcels of food, toiletries, warm winter clothes and blankets, which they distributed at the camp.

Mr Ibrahim said: “I think people just feel they want to help other human beings. That’s all it is really.”

The cost of the journey was paid from the donors’ own pockets, and everybody chipped in £50 to pay the £700 for the vans’ rental and tickets for the car ferry across the Channel.

The group is the latest in a number organised by Redbridge residents to help migrants.

Last month, the Recorder spoke to Ra’ed Khan, 28, of Royston Gardens, Redbridge, who along with his sister Rabania Khan, 31, and her husband Tanzeel Ayub, was working hard to help the migrants as much as he could.

Journalist Ra’ed, collected more than £2,000 to help those living in campsites, along with clothes, toys and basic toiletries.

Ra’ed said it was the “human thing to do” after shocking pictures showing the body of a Syrian toddler washed up on a Greek beach made headlines around the world.

“The amount we’ve raised has doubled – we’ve had an incredible response,” he said.

“I thought it would be a massive push, but it’s been great – it’s nice to see that British people care about things like this.”

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