France: How to help the refugees?

TOLERANCE AND SOLIDARITY .

An article from The Routard (translated by CPNN)

Facing the humanitarian emergency, it is high time to act. Donations of money, volunteering, housing, support to NGOs and local citizen initiatives … Here at Routard.com we provide an update on the various ways to help the refugees in Europe, as well as their families back home.

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This is one of the worst humanitarian disaster since World War II. Since the beginning of the year, Europe is facing a record influx of refugees, the majority of them Syrian nationals. More than 320,000 people, according to the UN, crossed the Mediterranean, from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Sudan and other countries at war.

For thousands of them, this trip will have been the last. The Mediterranean is becoming a cemetery, the gates of a fortress Europe, refusing to see the magnitude of the tragedy.

The numbers are chilling. Just in Syria, according to Amnesty International, nearly 220 000 people have been killed since the conflict began and 12.8 million people are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance. More than 4 million refugees from Syria (95%) are found in just five countries: Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt

Behind these cold statistics, there are as many human tragedies. These men, women and children have no choice but to leave their country to save their lives. They deserve primarily our solidarity and support, not rejection, barbed wire and repression.

We must help the refugees!

How?

Monday, September 7, Francois Hollande announced that 24,000 refugees will be hosted on French soil during the next two years, which is a drop in the bucket in view of the humanitarian emergency.

Without waiting, you can bring your help to refugees who need you. Initiatives are increasing in France being undertaken by private citizens and NGOs.

There are many ways to help:

– Donations of money, food or clothing;

– welcoming persons in difficulty;

– Volunteering; administrative assistance, citizen engagement with local associations …

To be effective, it is essential to organize and make contact with the volunteers to know the real needs.

(Click here for the original French version.)

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Question for this article

The refugee crisis, Who is responsible?

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Who should you contact?

Here are some addresses and links of the main NGOs that are helping refugees. These organizations provide assistance to foreign refugees in the country and in France, by implementing various initiatives: medical and food aid on site, improvement of living conditions of refugees in transit camps, assistance throughout the course, rescue in the Mediterranean, support for local associations, particularly in Calais.

They state on their website their help and intervention program and explain how you can help.

FNARS, a federation of 870 charitable associations throughout France.

United Nations Agency for Refugees

The International Rescue Comittee

Médecins du Monde

Médecins sans Frontières

French Red Cross

France Terre d’Asile

Care France

Première Urgence Internationale

Solidarités International

La Cimade

UNICEF

CCFD Terre-Solidaire

Emmaüs

Calais Migrant Solidarity

In addition to these, hundreds of citizens’ and local initiatives have emerged in France.

To locate the initiative nearest you, the aiderlesrefugies.fr website lists all the relief operations, support and hospitality in France and worldwide in géolocalisant them on a map.

If you want to host a person or family in need, the SINGAPORE refugee aid organization created the CALM platform (like home) that connects individuals and refugees and lists thousands of proposals for accommodation.

You are free to choose the initiatives that suit you best, exercising discernment especially for donations of money because if NGOs have a legal duty of transparency, this is not necessarily the case for private initiatives.

 Anyway, every action counts. Thanks for your help.

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