Last November, with growing numbers of refugees at our doors and falling temperatures, we at Miksaliste are finding we don’t have enough supplies to keep everyone warm. In an attempt to help, our volunteers spent the day turning an abundance of baby jumpers into hats, which can be given to children and adults alike.
Ogi, one of our volunteers, spoke a little bit about the difficulties we’re facing and how we’re trying to overcome
“Now when it’s winter, what we need the most are hoodies and sweaters, pants, hats, jackets and blankets, socks and shoes,” he says.
žThe team made needles out of paperclips and used decorative thread to stitch together around two dozen hats. “At this time, we don’t have other hats to give them, and it’s necessary. It’s cold,” says Ogi.
As this is the second winter of the refugee crisis, we understand many citizens have already emptied out their closets, and we are endlessly grateful for their goodwill. However, the reality is that we will always need more. Especially now, as many refugees sleep outside and we aren’t capable of securing everyone with enough layers of clothing and blankets, putting them at risk of falling ill.
“Regular citizens can help by bringing any clothes which they have which are, if possible, warm. Color, year it was made, none of those things are important,” says Ogi. “Also, if citizens have things like old sewing machines which they don’t need anymore, sewing supplies, anything like that, that would be good, as it could help us turn clothing that isn’t good for winter into something we can give away”.
Another way citizens can help is by volunteering. Not only do we always welcome people in our activity corners and distribution team, but there is probably a way for us to integrate your skills and hobbies too.
“Almost all skills can be used for volunteering,” says Ogi. “We had a volunteer who was a hairdresser and then she worked here at Miksaliste and in the camps as a hairdresser, which meant a lot because it helped them feel normal again”.
Ogi goes on to point out that something people often forget when it comes to refugees is just how important it is for them to feel like regular people. “When the hairdresser was there, that was really great. Because it’s the most normal thing in the world, for a person to go get a haircut”.
So, if you have any things or time you’d like to share with us, get in touch or stop on by and we will surely find a way to make the best of it!