Down Rallies To Aid Of Refugees As Donation Points Are Set Up

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At the Social Enterprise Hub in Downpatrick volunteers helped by the Newry Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Cllr Naomi Bailie, launched their appeal for support for the Northern Ireland Calais Refugee Solidarity group in their efforts to collect warm clothes and other essentials to try to help meet the immediate needs of people fleeing war torn homes.

[caption id="attachment_58667" align="aligncenter" width="540"]Announcing the Downpatrick Hub as a collection point for aid for refugees are Cllr Naomi Bailie, Chairperson of Down District Council, Stephen McClelland, Manager of the Downpatrick Social Enterprise Hub, with volunteers Manus Teague, Phil Reilly, Orla Watt of Parent Action and Ailish Teague. Announcing the Downpatrick Hub as a collection point for aid for refugees are Cllr Naomi Bailie, Chairperson of Down District Council, Stephen McClelland, Programme Manager of Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency, with volunteers Manus Teague of Pop Up Art, Phil Reilly, Orla Watt of Parent Action and Ailish Teague.[/caption]

Appealing to the citizens of Newry, Mourne and Down, Council Chairperson Naomi Bailie said: “The Council would like to encourage people to give what they can to help. This is an international crisis and we can make a difference by providing warm clothing or other useful items to show our support, there are also volunteer opportunities available. Those who cannot give items or their time but would like to assist financially towards transport and storage costs as well as additional aid on the ground can do so by visiting the Northern Ireland Calais Refugee Solidarity on Facebook.”

Cllr Bailie outlined the items which can be donated, and said: “Items needed are tents, heavy duty rubbish bags, blankets and sleeping bags, men’s warm winter clothes in S/M sizes, hats and gloves, men’s shoes (runners and walking), candles and torches, toothpaste, toothbrushes, razors, shaving foam, medicines and First Aid supplies, bikes and puncture repair kits.”

[caption id="attachment_58665" align="alignright" width="390"]The image that has broken a million hearts... a drowned Syrian boy lies on a beach after his father lost him at sea while trying to make it to Europe. The image that has broken a million hearts… a drowned Syrian boy lies on a beach after his father lost him at sea while trying to make it to Europe.[/caption]

“You can drop off these items to the Solidarity Collection Points at:

Ballynahinch Leisure Centre;

Crossgar Community Centre;

Kilkeel Leisure Centre;

Crossmaglen Community Centre;

Newry Lions Club;

WIN Business Park, Newry;

Social Enterprise Hub, Downpatrick

(at the Grove Shopping Centre)

St Mary’s Hall, Newcastle;

and Warrenpoint Town Hall.”

Cllr Baillie met with Stephen McClelland, Programme Manager for Newry and Mourne Co-operative and Enterprise Agency,  and other volunteers at the Downpatrick Collection Point on Saturday to offer support.

For further please information contact your nearest Solidarity Collection Point.

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