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New Collection and Sorting depot for donations

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After weeks of very hard work, the Collection/Sorting Depot at Richmond Hill* was opened on Saturday 21st November. This is a collaborative effort between Leeds City Council, Voluntary Action Leeds, Yorkshire Aid, Leeds City of Sanctuary and others.

Wonderful volunteers are sorting the donations into shoes, women’s, men’s, children’s clothes, bedding,toiletries, equipment etc and then local refugee organisations are collecting what they need and lorry loads of goods are being taken to refugees in Calais, Dunkirk and Greece. With the winter upon us now, people are dying from the cold and they need donations of EVERYTHING! We are asking everyone to clear their cupboards out and to send their donations to Richmond Hill.

The actual address is Richmond Hill Recreation Centre, Pontefract Lane, Off York Rd, Leeds, LS9 9 AH. You can park right outside and it is besides Richmond hill Primary School. 
The centre is open every Saturday and Sunday from 12-4pm but if people want to donate at different times then please ring 07784130964 to arrange this.
If you want to keep up todate about what is happening and see some lovely photos you can do on https://www.facebook.com/YorkshireAid/?fref=photo.
 
If you know of anyone who might be willing to volunteer to help please contact Dee on 07784130964. This could be a good volunteering opportunity for people who don’t speak English well.Many asylum seekers and refugees in Leeds  don’t want others to suffer as they have suffered and they feel better about themselves when they are able to help others so pass this message on to them.
*The Depot is the former Recreation Centre off Pontefract Lane – on Cross Aysgarth Mt, Leeds LS9 9AH

Full press release below

A group of local charities have come together to run a new sorting and distribution depot for donations received in response to the unfolding refugee crisis in Europe.

In the last week, Volunteers have transformed the former leisure centre at Richmond Hill into a sorting and distribution depot for donations. Existing organisations have been overwhelmed by the generosity displayed which has stretched existing capacities to store and sort donations. The space will allow organisations to work together by pooling donations and volunteer time and ensure donations are distributed to refugee and homeless charities within Leeds, the region, across Europe and beyond.

“We’re keen to ensure the help gets to where it’s needed most” said Jon Beech of Leeds Asylum Seekers Support Network. “There are many people in Leeds without adequate clothing or shoes, and we need to make sure they get help, as well making sure we get aid to people on the continent. People have been very generous and we want to make sure that we get the right stuff to the right people at the right time.”

“We desperately need volunteers to help us sort through the mountains of donations, to work out what we’ve got, so we can get them to where they’ll have the biggest impact. Right now, getting toys to Children in Calais is less important than making sure they are kept safe, warm and dry. We can make sure the toys get a good home with refugee children in Leeds. ”

Although it has been operating for less than a week, the depot has already shipped its first consignment of clothing and shelter building equipment to refugees arriving in Lesvos. There is a particular need for waterproof coats, hard wearing shoes (wellies, walking boots, trainers), sleeping bags, tents and blankets.

A Big Rummage event will take place on Saturday 28th November 10:00am – 16:00am. Volunteers willing to help sort donations are asked to contact [email protected] or call him on 07999 795863.

People wanting to make donations are invited to bring things along on Saturday or contact Brendan and ask about other days for deliveries.

Yorkshire Aid, Refugees Start, Voluntary Action Leeds, Leeds City of Sanctuary and Leeds Asylum Seekers Support Network have agreed to coordinate the distribution centre for the next 3 months, with the support of Leeds City Council who own the building.

Contact: Brendan Tannam 07999 795863 [email protected]

Richmond Hill Leisure Centre, off Pontefract Lane – on Cross Aysgarth Mount, Richmond Hill, Leeds LS9 9AH behind GREAT CLOTHES, just off York Road