The harrowing image of children drowned while fleeing the conflict in Syria has prompted a mother to launch an appeal for clothes and toys to send to the devastated country.
Cherry Griffiths said the sight of the children floating in the sea made her determined to help ease the hardship of the people living in Syria.
She said: “Seeing the pictures of the dead children really affected me because I have kids myself.
“I got quite emotional about it and decided I must do something,” said the 25-year-old.
“You can’t imagine the pain of parents who feel they must set out on these dangerous journeys.”
Cherry, who has a daughter Ruby, aged three, and is 18-weeks pregnant, said it is a way for people who want to show their compassion for the plight of the Syrians but without being drawn into the whole debate about how to handle the refugee crisis facing Europe.
“Many are not sure about the whole issue of Syrian refugees but doing this will help them in their own country.
“If you simply want to help but don’t know what to do, this is the way,” said Cherry, who lives in Long Lawford with her husband Tom, aged 30.
“If we can help the people living in Syria it will perhaps make their lives not so desperate. For a little boy who has lost everything, a toy car will mean so much.”
Also wanted are clean blankets and pens, pencils and paper for the children.
Cherry, who is a bridal consultant at Bea’s Bridal Boutique in Market Hill, Southam, has also appealed for footcare products. “A lot of them, especially the children, don’t have shoes, and they have all kinds of foot problems.
“Everyone has all kinds of spare stuff, so please donate.”
Wheelchairs, crutches and unopened pain-relief medication will also be accepted.
1The campaign group 38 Degrees has started a “Refugees Welcome in Rugby” petition calling on Rugby Borough Council to offer homes to refugee families. It is at https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/refugees-welcome-in-rugby-3
Cherry is hoping a van hire company will donate a vehicle, or she will hire one, to take items to the charity Syria Relief, which has a warehouse in Manchester.
Items can be left at Cherry’s home at 46 Woodleigh Road, Long Lawford, Rugby CV23 9FB, or posted. Items cannot be left at her workplace.
She has also set up a Facebook page at I’m doing a big item collection for Syrian families in need, could you help spread the word?
The work of the Syria Relief charity can be viewed at https://www.syriarelief.org.uk/contact/
The United Nations estimate that more than two million have fled Syria, while more than four million are displaced within Syria.