The Slovenia Times

Charity Starts Shipping Aid to Migrants in Balkans


The charity has collected some 8 tonnes of aid in a campaign prompted by two Slovenians who spent their vacation on Lesbos helping out at the local refugee camp.

The first shipment of aid was flown to Lesbos today by flag carrier Adria Airways. The rest will be sent by train to Serbia, where the charity established an info centre for refugees, ADRA Slovenia president Maja Ahac told the press at the Ljubljana airport.

ADRA has suspended the campaign for a few days and will relaunch it on Monday, after the aid is shipped. The 8 tonnes of clothes and toiletries were collected in only 36 hours.

"With this campaign Slovenians showed the real face of social responsibility and empathy," said Jure Poglajen, one of the Slovenians who spent the past weeks helping out refugees on Lesbos. "I hope the government will follow suit when refugees come knocking on our door."

He and David Zorko, a dentist and a veterinarian by profession, returned from Lesbos today, describing to the press the situation in the Molivos refugee camp.

They helped provide medical care and distributed food, water and clothes. More than 800 refugees from Syria, Iraq, Somalia and Afghanistan arrive each day to the northern part of the island.

Providing aid is becoming a challenge, especially because the task is in the sole hands of locals and some 30 volunteers coming above all from Denmark, Norway, Belgium and Germany, the pair said.

There is no help from the Greek government nor the EU. Aid to those stranded off-shore is provided by the police or by the coast guard, while the UNCHR is in charge of transport to Athens and Thessaloniki, they added.

Locals are tolerant of the refugees but their patience is wearing thin as the numbers increase, Poglajen and Zorko said, adding that they did not notice violence or other crime. "These people are running from war and hope to find a better life in Europe."


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