Welcoming refugees into the essentials pop-up

25 October 2021

Ava Pevsner

“The most rewarding part of volunteering 6, even 7, days a week running the essentials pop up shop is when Afghan evacuees come in person to collect clothes. They typically arrive cold and anxious and leave warm and full of smiles. It makes the long hours worthwhile”  Rose McGrath, lead volunteer

On occasion, we are able to welcome newly arrived refugees into our essentials pop-up, giving them the opportunity to choose their own clothes, coats, shoes, toiletries and other essential items. They choose the exact items they want and try them on to ensure they fit perfectly and will be thoroughly worn and appreciated. As usual, we pack these items into suitcases and luggage which they take with them. Sometimes they travel by car to our centre which means they are able to take larger toys or baby items, which otherwise are too difficult to transport to hotels.

It is immensely heart warming and rewarding to be able to give newly arrived refugees the opportunity to choose each and every item that they want, so we know that every item will be used and loved. Especially coming into the winter, it is especially enriching seeing refugees leave layered up with warm coats, proper shoes, hats, scarves and gloves.

It makes both us and them very happy!