With thousands of refugees arriving and moving through Europe there is also an immense number of supplies in food, clothing, hygiene and medical articles needed.
NoMoreWalking unfortunately cannot handle directly item donations as we are located in Switzerland which makes it very difficult for us to receive aid donation from abroad or send it forward to the groups on the ground.
We will, however, very happily provide you with addresses of trusted groups on the ground, as well as advise as you prepare your item donations. Contact us!
Collecting and sending item donations: things to consider
Collect as many items as possible and sending them to where they are needed is a wonderful move and can be extremely helpful! As there are logisticsinvolved however, we kindly urge you to first consider some facts to make sure your kind item donation will be helpful and not impede the process.
Can you buy the items locally, where they are needed? This will save you transportation costs, get the supplies where they are needed faster and help the local economy, especially where the people are greatly affected. Check this group for local vendors in Greece. For food items it is most common to order by local wholesalers. Ask the group you are supporting they most probably have an account with one.
Is what you are sending needed? There are items that have already been donated in abundance and others that are always in shortage. More is not better in this case. Donations that cannot be used immediately will take up space and there is usually not enough of that. Check regularly with the groups you want to donate what they are requesting. Usually you can’t go wrong with shoes, socks and track pants. These are needed and will always be needed.
Have you factored in the shipping cost? Collecting items can turn BIG really quickly! Everyone wants to help and you may soon find yourself packing more than a box. Many have had to send truckloads of items collected from friends and family. If you are organising a drive, bear in mind that you will need time and volunteers to sort out the donations, pack and possibly arrange transportation. Make sure to check transport costs, before collecting! You might find it more efficient to buy some of the things locally.
Have you checked necessary processes? Customs may be an issue if you are located outside the EU. Check with the customs first and figure out how the items will also be imported to where you are sending them. There might be paperwork involved that needs to be done from the side of the receiver. Let them know ahead of time!
Have you notified the recipient ? It is always very important to let the reciepients to expect what you are sending, first to make sure the items are needed but also to allow them to prepare with volunteers and space, especially if your donation is more than 2-3 boxes.
Other things to consider when donating items:
Sorting & labelling: please sort the items as best as possible before sending. Please include only ONE kind of item in each box and label it accordingly. If possible keep Children, women, men donations separately and distinguish between sizes too. Item(s) names/gender/size (age for children or S/M/L/XL for adults)
Especially when thinking to send clothes, check with there recipient first. Throughout the last year most of the storages have received an abundance of clothes and cannot accept any more. If you are asked to send clothes, please only send clean clothes in good condition. We DO NOT hand out torn items. These are people in need and they must feel human. Clothes and shoes is one way to make them feel better and a freshly washed shirt goes a long way!
Suitability: Please only send weather appropriate, culture appropriate clothes and shoes! Women’s clothing should be a bit conservative, not too tight, no short skirts.
You taking into consideration these guidelines will make an immense difference!!