Lesbos – Thankfulness

Volunteer Yvonne tells her story

“The older Afghan woman just gave me a big hug. Her arms around me, a soft kiss on my cheek. She spoke in her own language. I didn’t know what she was saying. But I understood her just fine. Her gratitude touched me deeply.

She was grateful because I picked her up from Moria with our car. Together with her three sons. And took her to a camp where things are much better. Without a fence around it. Without thick walls. Without barbed wire. Without police, Frontex and military personnel. Without riot police van out front. But with volunteers who care about people… Volunteers who treat them as human beings.

On request of UNHCR, Boat Refugee Foundation transports groups of vulnerable refugees from Camp Moria to Camp Kara Tepe. These are, among others, families, the elderly, pregnant women, people with health issues.

That’s where I was this afternoon. With my little car. In front of the Moria gates. With my vest on, and my badge around my neck. And my sweetest smile on my face. Because I was forewarned that it was not so easy, getting in. It turned out not te be really hard. After a short discussion, the gates opened.

Then they tried to put seven adults with luggage in my little Corsa. Uhm…. That seems like a challenge… In the end I left with two Syrian mothers and a bus load of young children. They did not speak any English. But, when driving off, they understood my ‘Bye bye Moria!’ just fine and they yelled it at the top of their lungs with me.
Another trip back to Moria. Waiting again. And no, seven adults still don’t fit in my car. After which I drove back to Kara Tepe with the Afghan mother and her sons. To receive her hug once I got there.

Thank you sweet lady. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to do more for you. Take care. Be safe.”