Can anyone Help me at all!?


(Damian Lambkin) #1

Can anyone help me at all!?


Slightly controversial subject here for some. I have been getting involved with some aid work at the Jungle in Calais.

I have been trying to focus on helping the "lone children" some of these children are as young as 6 going up to 18, they are all by themselves, their parents have either been lost at sea, or trafficked, or haven't made the journey.

They are from all nationalities, Afgan, Syrian, Egyptian, Palestinian etc..... And sadly they being taken advantage of!

No one is helping and I want to!

I am looking at renting or buying a property far away from the Jungle and setting up some kind of orphanage or fostering home for these children. Now funding it is going to be on me and that's fine, but I have no idea on the rules and regulations associated to it in France! Can anyone help me!? Do you think I would get support in France for doing this!?

Sorry to have a little sensitive and maybe controversial post - but I am a parent who refuses to see children suffer like this or in any way!

Thanks for any help in advance!

(Huybers Jos) #2

Jane Weir, and yes as soon they are there their parents, grand-parents, brothers and sisters we have to allow them also to join these children ? You can't let this poor children alone in their new country !


(Jane Weir) #3

Hi Damian There is an article on the front page of The Observer today saying David Cameron is being urged by charities such as Save The Children to accept thousands of unaccompanied children to the UK. They are highlighting the huge risks to these children and the fact that many have families in the UK who would take them into their homes. Hopefully this will happen soon to relieve the suffering of these children.


(Jane Weir) #4

My thoughts are that what you are trying to do is admirable and I only wish our governments could consider the humanitarian aspects of all of this. It's appalling that children are suffering in this way.

I think though that it is going to be very difficult to effect change.

However I believe I read somewhere that many of the people at Calais are determined to get to the UK because they already have family or some connections here ?

I am wondering if focussing on individual children's stories could help. Would it be possible to ascertain if individual children have any family in the UK who are prepared to offer them a home? Maybe then by making contact with the families and local pressure groups in the UK and getting them to raise with local MPs etc. from the UK side enough pressure could be put on the UK government to accept these children given that they wouldn't have to provide a foster or children's home place.

We have a lot of unaccompanied child refugees here in Scotland within our care system. There was publicity last week about a shortage of 9,000 foster families across the UK including 800 here in Scotland. I believe though that if any of those children have Scottish connections- I know this is a long shot- but I feel the Scottish government would be sympathetic to helping them get here. We are governed by UK immigration law but have already offered to take a larger share of the refugees. The bottom line is that Scotland needs more people, particularly the young. I believe the population here would also be sympathetic to the plight of these children.


(Shirley Morgan) #5

I Can’t do anything practical to help you Damien, just replying to offer my moral support and admiration for your wanting to be The Good Samaritan!

I applaud your intentions, but listen to Brian and the others, you’ll be no use to anyone if you end up in a French Police Cell or Court! And don’t expect any sympathy or help from the British Embassy in Paris either, if that happens!


(Brian Milne) #6

French child protection laws are as strict as UK ones and working with children is fine until somebody is caught. Whilst a blind eye is turned all is OK but talking about it with somebody in the child support sector today she simply warned that people should not get one foot wrong. Of course there are unofficial groups, Damian is trying to do it upfront and legitimately though.


(Diana Mary Eccles) #7

What does it matter whose fault it is - they are human beings - some people seem to lose the plot over this. Any help wherever to people in crisis is good and lets not turn this into yet another political debate.


(Huybers Jos) #8

Each continent should solve their problems their self. If necassar with a bit of help from another continent. Every body should follow the laws. You want to ask asil in Europe ? You have to ask it in the country where you enter the EU. What a shame that parents but their own children in such a situation ! Is that my and your fault ? No !


(Diana Mary Eccles) #9

Thanks - will join it as have people wanting to donate around Toulouse which is 2 hrs from me. Good luck


(Katherine de Ruty) #10

thats not quite true Brian, there are a lot of on the ground non official groups who are accessing the camps. sometimes it is difficult with road blocks and the Dunkirk camp is very difficult to access but it is possible.


(Katherine de Ruty) #11

Diana have you become a member of the Facebook group France and Beyond ? there is a "reseau" of people all over france who collect, sort and transport etc.


(Diana Mary Eccles) #12

if I can help with anything involving organisation collections of anything here, just let me know. Not got a lot of money myself but would have some time and energy to do anything that would help.


(Damian Lambkin) #13

Hi Diana, thanks for the message - I know Care 4 Calais really well - I do a lot of work with them and I am going out on the 20th again to help deliver and distribute £2000.00 worth of food I am buying this week.

the "Guy" they know who's trying to get this all arranged is me! :-)


(Brian Milne) #14

There was a link to an article on Facebook but I had a power crash and have not been able to find it again. It was outlining the difficulties of intervention and access for people who are neither qualified nor registered to offer refugees help in general but children especially. Unregistered children are 'untouchable' anyway and anybody caught taking them away from official oversight without official support is going to have big trouble. In short, it is being made impossible for anybody but approved organisations to deal with refugees at all and is likely to get stricter.

I suspect they are trying to get the people to suffer so much they will just start retreating back toward where they came from themselves. No compassion or humanity on offer there!


(Diana Mary Eccles) #15

I know there is an organisation called Care4Calais and they are working in the Jungle at the moment so might good idea to approach them and get them on board as they are working on the ground with all refugees at the moment. Good luck and keep posting on here. I am trying to organise a collection of children clothes around Toulouse and somehow get them up to the camps but need someone around this area to collect/pick up and take up as I am 2 hours away. I have several people already on board with bags of clothes but just need a collector/transporter. Anyone interested?


(Matilde Holloway) #16

I can understand that issue very well, it is such a difficult situation. I just have a suspicion you will find it very difficult to work with the system about an orphanage for what is technically illegal immigrants... as they are not registered. At least that must be the first hurdle to cross - to investigate whether this could be accepted by the system, as it seems already determined that you will need to do this by the rules...

Also, are the children themselves really interested in this if they are so determined to go to the UK?

Still wishing you the best of luck and hope you can find a solution that will work for these children.


(Damian Lambkin) #17

Thanks for te kind words! The children are afraid to apply for asylum in France incase they get deported!
Plus their parents have put them on a boat and the last words they said were “Get to England, you’ll be safe there, when we can, we’ll find you there”. So they are determined to get to the UK so their parents can one day find them… Horribly sad!


(Brian Milne) #18

I have put up a friend invitation, just accept/respond then ask away.


(Matilde Holloway) #19

It is a very wonderful and admirable project to take on and I wish you the best of luck. I have no eal advice and living in the Languedoc probably too far away to help with the project.. My thoughts are though, that first step is getting the children through the asylum system. And I don't know how easy that is and where the children are allowed to live during that process? Maybe you have already looked into this.


(Joan fry) #20

I would like to help. I have a large house sitting empty.
Joanfry@hotmail com