We Need to Stop Making Excuses and Get Involved

It’s not news that for the past five years Aleppo has been bombed and people have been forced to flee their homes and seek shelter and safety elsewhere. The city – once as beautiful and prosperous as Paris, with stunning architecture and culture, is now in ruins.

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Carlo Ohanian | Olympia

 

 Thankfully, most of us will never have to go through anything like it – but recently I’ve been thinking, does that make us somewhat immune to the horror those people are experiencing?

Let’s face it, despite all the talk, people aren’t inclined to help migrants and refugees. The negative rhetoric popularised by certain media fails to see them as human and this negativity spreads stealthily from person to person like a virus.

Of course, the illusion that refugees come over to the UK to steal jobs and ruin our economy is nonsense. Benjamin Western, co-Founder of indiGO Volunteers was quoted recently saying, “They don’t care where they live, they just want to be safe.”

And anyway, the truth is the UK still hasn’t taken as many refugees as some people like to believe. There are an estimated 60 million people throughout the world who have been forced to flee their homes. This has created more than 15 million refugees worldwide, developing countries host over 80% of those people but it is surprising to know that there are an estimated 117,234 refugees living in the UK. That’s just 0.18 per cent of the total population (64.1 million people).

Benjamin Western | ‘Most refugees don’t want to live in Britain’.

 So why do so few people actually help? Blame our excuse culture, the fact there’s always something more pressing to do than helping. I simply don’t buy it – especially a young person with no family commitments and nothing to pin them down. Perhaps, tragically, our young people don’t see this a cause worthy of giving help.

Of course, as cliché as ‘every little helps’ sounds, it’s true. So don’t make an excuse – I’m not going to.

Aleksandra Ganuszko

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