Karen’s heartfelt reflections after a weekend at Calais Charity


Ferry crossing Dover to Calais with new friends

If only we could be able to replace politics and religion for kindness, empathy and compassion….

Last week I had the blessing of spending time with six extraordinary people volunteering at a refugee camp in the North of France. Although I didn’t know much about them, I knew that we all had one thing in common: the desire to help people and see a better world. 

I volunteered in the Refugee Community Kitchen chopping salad and vegetables. Even a simple thing as that made me happy and gave me purpose and allowed me to forget the crazy normality of my own world. After spending all day at the kitchen, I was able to distribute food at the Dunkirk refugee camp. Seeing mothers and children, and being able to say hello and serve them warm food was just an amazing feeling, their smiles gave me hope and reassurance.   

The saddest moment was coming back home, reflecting on the situation refugees have to face daily; somehow I had this feeling of guilt, having a shower and getting in my bed, somehow felt unfair and knowing that miles away people out there are sleeping in inhumane conditions, I have been blessed with the freedom to talk and express myself, the freedom to travel wherever I’d like. Yet just miles away from home “crossing the border” is a dream for others. This enormous void should not exist, it is injustice and the feeling of sadness and frustration at a situation where yet still there’s not a solution is overwhelming to me.

We should all work towards a better world, being aware of the fact that even the smallest act of kindness can and will have an enormous impact.