Help to Migrants: 5 Ways to Make a Difference

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Probably like millions of people, I was sadly shocked by little Aylan’s picture last week and broke down in tears. I know you’ve probably read and heard his name thousands of times. I’m sorry that I brought it on once again to you. The truth is I can’t help but think about all the little Aylans out there. All these boys and girls caught in a war they surely didn’t dream about. All these kids whose parents had no other choice but to leave everything behind. I surely can’t blame them. I would probably do the exact same thing. I wouldn’t care the risks anymore. I would only think about THAT chance to survive and give my children a better place to live.

As you may know, I live in Canada. I must admit I’m not proud of it right now. I wish our government would be more flexible during this crisis and would help the migrants more. From what I read and saw, I think that is also what most Canadians want. But hey, I’m not the one making the decisions in Ottawa…

So I wondered how I could help. Here is what I found searching over the news and some trustful organizations:

 

Volunteer

I’m an expecting mom. Volunteering in Europe would be crazy right now, taking for granted they would need me. However, true help is needed on the field. Amnesty International has a “Get Involved” section on their website where you can find more info.

 

Financial Help

Sending money over is always a way, but I’m afraid this type of help gets lost or misused or just takes too long. I was a little reassured when I found out that many trustful organizations have campaigns dedicated to the migrants’ crisis.

Canadian Red Cross

Médecins sans frontières/Doctors without Borders

UNICEF (US)

Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS)

And there even is an Aylan Kurdi Fund now. Although I praise the initiative, I would prefer giving to an organization that has been around for a long time. Meaning they know what they do… I think!

 

Donate Supplies

It’s also possible to help by giving supplies. I think it’s a great way to help, but it’s not that easy if you don’t live nearby. Amazon opened a registry for things to buy in order to help refugees. When I checked in, the items were limited, but there might be more in the next days/weeks.

For people near the crisis, reaching out to give a blanket, a bottle of water or simply a hug can make a huge difference in this person’s day.

 

Share Your Home

Again, this isn’t easy for Canadians as the government controls migration. However, there is a group called Refugees Welcome that acts like an AirBNB for refugees in Europe. Unfortunately, they are not able to meet demands right now and their site in not properly working. Hope they get some help soon in order to help in return!

 

Influence Your Leaders

For citizens like me who are frustrated by their leaders, this is probably an inevitable way to help. Participating in protests or marches to show your opinion is a way. Don’t be afraid to share some news that reflects your thoughts on social media also. Or sign up for petitions you believe in.

 

I realize all these actions are rather small compared to the urgency and the needs. I wish there could be even more we could do. Hopefully with all these little acts altogether, it will make a big change.

 

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