The most recent news and images from the Syrian refugee situation in Europe has many of us jettisoned into action. We all know how wonderful babywearing can be to keep our babies safe in dangerous circumstances and some community groups and businesses have started collecting carriers to send to the refugee camps in Europe. But is this what the refugees need or want? Will there be aid workers at the camps who can instruct the parents on how to use the carriers safely? Are there more pressing needs for these displaced people that take priority? Is this the very best help we can offer?
If you want to send carriers to the refugee camps in Europe I'm sure they will help in a small way and here are a couple of sites that are collecting. I'm afraid I have not found a Canadian group as yet so you will have to cover the cost of shipping the carrier to the UK (money that could be used more directly if donated through another organisation.)
There are other ways you can help, however. Here are a few ideas;
UNICEF Canada focuses on providing humanitarian relief to children in many countries including Syria.
Doctors Without Borders, or Medecins Sans Frontieres provide medical assistance to people within Syria.
Migrant Off Shore Aid Station is an organisation that is 'dedicated to preventing loss of life at sea by providing assistance to migrants who find themselves in distress while crossing the Mediterranean Sea in unsafe vessels.'
Amnesty International is an international NGO focused on human rights.
Canadian Red Cross is part of the international Red Cross organisation and is working with the Syrian Red Crescent to bring humanitarian relief to the refugees.
UNHCR Canada is the UN Refugee Agency, it 'is a lifeline for people displaced by violence, conflict and persecution—helping them survive, recover and build a better future.'
The International Organization for Migration supports refugees by providing support services to international governments.
If you know of any other organisations that are sending direct aid please add them in the comments and I will edit as appropriate.
Another bigger way to help is to sponsor a refugee yourself, or as part of a group. Here's a link to help get you started;
Of course, if you can't help financially (and many of us just can't) then please join us in prayers and blessings (whatever power you believe in) for the innocent men, women and children who are struggling at this time.