Around half of the Syrian population (10 million people) tried to find safety just outside the Syrian borders or in the North of Syria itself after the Arab Spring. Photographer Rogier Maaskant launched, in collaboration with the Syria Committee, an initiative aimed at collecting warm clothes for the Syrian refugees. At the EUR clothes for the Syrian refugees can be handed in until this weekend.

The Facebook-initiative ClothesDropSyria started on Januari 21st with collecting warm clothes for Syrian refugees. The initiative started with a national network of drop off points at art schools and universities throughout the Netherlands. ClothesDropSyria asks people to pack any clean and non-broken clothes, shoes and warm blankets they can miss and bring them to the nearest drop off point.

Drop off point EUR

The ClothesDropSyria is a huge success so far and over 30 drop off points were initiated within three weeks throughout The Netherlands. The EUR is one of those drop off points. The Rotaract Club Rotterdam actively helps to collect as many clothes as possible at the EUR. “A central point was chosen so it is easy for students and employees to drop off clothes”, explains Yana Pavlova, a Business Information Management student and President of the Rotaract Club Rotterdam. On the third floor of the T-building clothes can be handed in.

Clothes are important

Syrian refugees need help. Often they live in primitive refugee camps without any decent sanitarian facilitations and without protection of the horrid weather conditions during winter. “With such large numbers of refugees there is always a lack of supplies”, highlights Pavlova. Especially clothes are needed and important. “Most refugees get to the camps with no more than the clothes on their body”, emphasizes Pavlova, “that is not enough to survive the bitter cold of the winter.”

More involvement

“I hope that the Netherlands and the Western world will become more involved with helping people in Syria”, says Désane van Brederode, writer and adviser for the Syrian Committee, “the complexity of the situation may not be used as an excuse to not help.” Pavlova agrees. “Plenty of people have clothes they do not wear often”, says Pavlova, “I want to encourage everyone to double check their closet, it is especially the small donations which can make a huge difference.”

Collecting of clothes stops this weekend

Dropping off clothes is possible only until this weekend. After that, all the collected supplies will be picked up at all 30 drop off points to be packed and shipped to Turkey. From Turkey, all the supplies will be further transported to the different Syrian refugee camps. More info: NdB