The success of the project in 2015 was beyond anything I could have ever imagined when I first started the project in October. We sent 924 bags to refugees in Kos which were distributed out over the Christmas and New Year period by Kos Kindness, providing some of the most vulnerable people with essentials that we take for granted and bringing a small amount of joy and happiness into their lives, even if just temporarily. We also raised an unbelievable £2,822.98 which was enough to cover all costs and allowed us to send additional items which the refugees really needed. During 2015, the UN High Commission for Refugees reported that 850,000 refugees arrived on the Greek Islands and in total 1,000,573 refugees are believed to have reached Europe[1], showing how Greece has undoubtedly been the most affected. We helped provide the very basics of warm clothing, sanitary items and toys to some of those in need.

This achievement would never have happened had so many local people and local businesses not backed the project and put all their efforts in to filling bags, helping promote the project, offering space for drop-off and collections points and donating. The success was beyond my wildest dreams and having seen the enthusiasm and willingness to help by so many people, I am more motivated than ever to ensure this project continues to help refugees and ease the distress of their situation ever so slightly. We cannot solve this crisis but we can contribute to improving the situation alongside so many other charities, NGO’s, volunteer projects and willing individuals. We can make a difference, and what seems like a small input from us means the world to the people on the receiving end. Thank you to every single person and business that helped make this possible – we hope you will all be involved in the activities we are planning for 2016.