Donations away to Calais

HARD AT WORK: Alan Todd, Angela Feeney,Peter McDade, Barry McCulloch, Pat O'Rourke, and, front, Frank McKay.
HARD AT WORK: Alan Todd, Angela Feeney,Peter McDade, Barry McCulloch, Pat O'Rourke, and, front, Frank McKay.

Volunteers who collected donations from all over Lanarkshire for refugees in Calais took THREE HOURS to unload their vans.

Such was the effort from the Wishaw to Calais group, a team of nine had to book in as the only drop-off of the day at the London base of the CalAid organisation recently.

The group set off on Saturday, October 3 and emptied three van loads of clothes, toiletries and other essential items they had been collecting in recent weeks.

The appeal garnered so much attention that the volunteers were overwhelmed by the generosity of locals and ran out of storage space.

On hearing their plight, North Lanarkshire Council stepped in to offer the use of a warehouse in Bellshill and vehicles to transport the donations to London.

The team consisted of Peter McDade, Angela Feeney, Allan Todd, Maria Feeney and Gillian McNay, as well as local councillors Pat O’Rourke, Frank McKay, Barry McCulloch and Alan Clinch.

The items will now be organised for distribution in the Sangatte refugee camp.

Peter said: “We travelled to London in three, full to bursting, large vans to deliver the donations we’d collected for refugees to the CalAid organisation.

“We’d arranged to be the only drop-off of the day because we had so much to donate. Such was the generosity of the people who had donated to our appeal it took the best part of three hours to unload everything we had collected.

“We would very much like to thank everyone who has been so generous in their donations to the group.

“Special thanks go to North Lanarkshire Council who have provided vans and storage to allow our collection to have been so successful, it wouldn’t have been possible without them.”

Angela added: “We’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity the people of North Lanarkshire have shown.

“Our group started off with a fairly modest ambition – to take a van with clothes and items to Calais for the refugees.

“It’s fair to say that it’s developed into something far bigger than we could ever imagined.

“So many people wanted to do something and we are so grateful to everyone who has helped us.”