Sunday 6 September 2015


Readers share their feelings on the refugee crisis and families fleeing from war-torn Syria; it makes for powerful and heartfelt reading…

Sarah says:
I live in France and every day on National Information we have things about immigration. I want to do something to help all of them but I am too young. When I am getting older, if this continues, I swear I am going to do something. I want to do something. I have the opportunity to grow up with no civil war. I have the opportunity to grow up with no poverty. I can go to school. I can have a book and read. Not every child can do this. France is a land of liberty. Also, the European Union is a symbol for the poor in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. I hope they can have a better life in our union. I want to do something to make this happen.

Emily says:
Every time I see something like this I think about when me and my friends are moaning about bot having enough money to go into town and buy the latest clothes and make up when there are some people who don't even have a safe home any longer. In places like the UK we should all be more thankful that we can go to school and not have to live our lives in fear. It is so unfair that where you are born affects your whole future so strongly, because that is something none of us can control.

Abigail says:
It is really heartbreaking seeing pictures of dead children on beaches. I wish I could do something to help, but I am too young and I have no money. If I could, I would do all I could. Currently I am living with my granddad and I hate it when he yells at the TV that the refugees should go back to their own countries. It is even worse when you see 'friends' share pictures that tell the refugees to stay away and try to claim that all they want is money. I watched a documentary about Calais and it was heart wrenching. The police brutality there is extreme. I read somewhere that many millions of people have fled countries affected by war and ISIS terrorism, but that only a tiny fraction have arrived at Calais.

Hannah says:
It makes my blood boil to hear people saying 'refugees are not our problem because we need to look after our own.' They are humans too, they ARE our own! Just imagine the bad fortune to be born in a country that finds itself torn apart by war. That's all it boils down to, luck of birth. If the shoe were on the other foot, we'd be screaming for people to do something. These people's lives are in danger and our nation shames itself by its response.

Hope says:
I feel very upset when I see people - even friends sometimes - saying that refugees are not wanted in Britain. I feel this because my parents are immigrants also, and when people say bad things about the migrants it hurts. I know we are not English, but Britain is our home and we love it. I would not let the refugees from Syria drown trying to find a safe place to live. They are living in tents with no food and no supplies except what others can spare for them. And soon the bad weather will come. What then? I think we could make them welcome, all across Europe, show them that we care. When I see some things people write and say and what the newspapers print, it makes me ashamed and also frightened. We are all people, aren't we?

Photos with thanks to UNHCR & UNICEF.
Those who wish can donate via Save The Children, Red Cross or CalAid. To donate blankets, toiletries, food etc, check to see if your area has a collection point for refugee relief.

Cathy says:
I know my readers are pretty awesome but these comments make me so very proud of the young people of Britain and France. You have the biggest hearts ever. Hope says it all when she says 'we're all people, aren't we?' Put yourself in the shoes of those families fleeing from extreme danger and you can't help but feel sympathy. COMMENT BELOW if you want to add to Sarah, Emily, Abigail, Hannah and Hope's messages of support...


  1. I live in Australia. When the Vietnam War was going on, we welcomed the refugees with open arms and that was a period of time when I feel proud to be Australian. Now the same things are happening all over again. We have put our soldiers into a war in which Australia was never a part of. We didn't have to send our soldiers to be brutally murdered. However we won't let any refugees into our country. I do admit that we can't exactly just let them live here without any security and that we can't take them all, but surely we can take a few? And at the very least we could give them better places to stay in. There was a report on the ABC about how girls as young as eight were being raped at the camps and that nearly 50% of refugees commit suicide in their first year at the camps. Also another thing-their first YEAR. These people are spending decades in a camp that will ultimately send them back to where they came from. It's disgusting.

  2. I agree with everybody. Like Hope said, 'we are all people.' That is the truth. It should not matter that we have a different colour skin or that we are from a different country or culture, we should all be treated equal. It is so unfair that some people are treated like dirt or that they are left alone on the streets to survive with no hand of help.
    We need to make a difference in this world, instead of letting it turn into something crazy, something uncaring.

  3. My mum and I donate two bag full oh winter clothes and blanket for the refugees.

  4. But they might not be legit, they could be terrorists. David cameron isnt saying no he is saying that we need to atleast check these people out first. But I do agree, they are humans too and need helping.

    1. I think the right-wing newspapers are responsible for spreading a LOT of fear. The refugees are actually fleeing from Isis. And nobody gets into the country without rigorous checks - that is nothing new. I get very upset when I hear this sort of thing… the families and children drowning in the seas around Greece and Turkey and living in refugee camps across the borders of their country… what more do they have to do for people to see their pain and reach out a helping hand? I understand that people will be saying that kind of thing around you, Dewey, but sometimes it is good to look beyond the fear and see the real picture. Your last sentence sums it up… they are humans too and need helping. (((xxx)))

  5. Theres no doubt its a sensitive subject. People will think different things, and thats ok, so long as we respect others veiws. Personally im not currently 'sided' as I call it, and maybe its better that way, I hate it when people argue because theres no point doing that when you could actually be doing something to support your case.

    1. Well said Kayleigh. This is not about politics… it's about kindness. And without discussion and debate we'll get nowhere. xxx

  6. I had just heard on the news last night that our area Chinchilla and Miles have been chosen, or are considering to relocate these latest refugees to our towns. How and what will this circumstance impact on our smallish country town??

    1. What country are you in, Anon? In UK ongoing support will be given to the refugees, and I am hugely proud of the towns and areas here who have offered to take the first intakes of refugees. Hopefully your town will open their arms to the refugees with human kindness and empathy, just as they would have to people fleeing Nazi Germany for example. xxx

    2. I see you are in Queensland Australia… what a wonderful country and what a great thing your community are doing. Of course, countries like the US and Australia/ New Zealand are largely populated by immigrants anyway if you go back over the decades/ centuries, and perhaps that is why they are more supportive and welcoming to others looking for a new life away from war-zones. I hope your community builds a wonderful, vibrant, multi-cultural society. I know the refugees will be very grateful for your welcome… and thankfully Australia is a vast, vast country with room to take people. Although even hugely overpopulated countries are doing their bit! xxx

  7. To answer your question, I think the impact will depend largely on how the community welcomes the refugees. In UK, immigrants contribute a huge amount to economy, culture and quality of life - I hope your community can be welcoming, open-hearted and uphold the Aussie tradition - people seeking safety and new starts, whatever their country of origin, have surely always been welcome there. xxx



Reader Emily, aged ten, explains how a Cathy Cassidy book inspired her to raise money for a refugee charity... Emily says: The Cathy Cassidy...