By Andy Tong firstname.lastname@example.org
CLOTHING company Childrensalon is calling on local businesses to donate any unused children’s stationery to give to the Hope Café in Athens.
The idea behind the appeal is that every child who goes into the Greek café will receive a pencil case containing colouring pens or pencils, rubbers, sharpener and a notepad or colouring book.
The stationery will be sent out on February 2, so donors are requested to bring any items to Childrensalon’s headquarters in Decimus Park.
The café was set up by a British woman, Kerrie Moor, who was moved by the plight of refugees in Greece and originally went on a month-long trip to Lesbos to help out.
She opened the venue in February last year to provide a safe space for refugees who have come to Greece to meet and relax – and make connections with the local community.
It supports vulnerable refugees, offers a variety of workshops and provides free clothing and food parcels, including baby milk and nappies.
Denise Hamilton, Director of the People Team at Childrensalon said: “We could provide much needed distractions and avenues for self-expression to help the children with the trauma that many of them have been through.
“Childrensalon do a lot of work in Kent with refugees and we heard about the Hope Café through our partner charity Bear Necessities, who collect teddy bears for refugee children. We were really touched and wanted to get involved.
“The idea of pencil cases has come from Bear Necessities working with the Hope Café, who feel that drawing and art is a great healer with the children.”
She added: “We support the seven families who were brought to Kent under the Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme, with Kent County Council and Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.
“We provide financial support and also act in a mentoring capacity through our Arabic speakers, and we also help them with translation.”