2 weeks until the #socialworkconvoy!!! MAJOR UPDATES


Money makes the world go around
It makes the world go ’round.

A mark, a yen, a buck or a pound
…a buck or a pound
…a buck or a pound.
Is all that makes the world go around
That clinking, clanking sound…
Can make the world go ’round


Apologies to all fans of Liza Minelli and Cabaret, but we need to push ahead now with fundraising! We need CASH to get across the Channel, and money to take with us – for the next few weeks, with regard to the convoy, it’s money that will make our world go round!

This week Michael has written an article for the THES, it will appear on 15 October. Community Care have asked if they can accompany us over on the 17th – and of course the answer is yes!

We are continuing to get reports of other groups joining us, or raising money for us.

An awful lot of social work courses have gone back this week. If they can’t join us, could they organise a collection for the convoy? Why not get onto local student social work groups?


Transport to France

We are just over two weeks away from the convoy and need to start booking cars, vans and lorries onto transport across the Channel. 

In Liverpool, people have decided to go for the boat across, rather than the train. If you are booking the train try to book on the 10.20am. We will confirm the boat times in the next few days.

The argument for the boat is: it’s slightly cheaper, we can drive on and then all meet for breakfast on the trip over. It will add about 15 miles each side onto your trip.

But the train is quicker and brings you out a mile from the camp. It’s up to local groups to make their own decision!


Overnight accommodation?

For those travelling from ‘up north’ it will be difficult to travel all the way, get a train or boat, demonstrate and take part in solidarity activities and travel back!

But we don’t want to spend extra money on hotels – and in any case, it might seem strange if we are going to nice hotels as we take materials for refugees!!

So we are investigating whether there is a community hall or student union hall that we could take over for the night. We would need to bring sleeping bags (but could then leave them in France). It will be basic, but will allow us to meet and get some sleep! If this would interest your group, please contact Michael on 07739729214.



There have been several reports coming out saying Calais is full of material! 

Two things on this:

First, our convoy with Stand Up to Racism has been ‘booked in’, we are expected. Random convoys are indeed problematic. But they do want good and useful stuff, not general goods (i.e. they don’t need lots of children’s clothes).

Second, they do have a lot of material. So money is particularly useful if you can raise it. One thing Liverpool is doing is asking students to bring in spare euros – it’s the end of the holiday season, think of all those spare euro coins we can’t exchange and will probably lose. But think about how useful they would be in Calais. Liverpool are having a social event – and on the bar there is a sign saying “buy a refugee a drink”. In other words every time you buy a drink or a round, add the price of a pint on and put it in the collection bucket.

If your group has raised money, we will soon be posting up the Stand Up to Racism account details for money to go into. This will then be exchanged and put in the local campaign funds. If we do it this way, we will cut down on currency exchange costs. 

However, if your group don’t want to do this, you can exchange your cash into euros and bring it. Please don’t distribute the money on your own! We will organise this on the day, so it is split evenly between the organisations on the ground.


Samos, Greece

We are looking to send a shipping container to Samos, Greece. Former Professor of Social Work, Chris Jones, now lives in Samos and works with refugees. 

He writes a regular blog about his work, which you can read here: 


We are waiting for quotes for containers. We have asked for quotes both sized 20ft and 40ft (mainly because Michael has no idea about the size and cost of this!!) We will post details as soon as we have them.

However, Chris sent us the following this week. This is what they are particularly short of in Samos:

“In terms of what would be helpful, it is certainly the case we are always short of decent shoes/trainers for men.  

Baby carriers would be useful; so would blankets/duvets and sleeping bags especially; jackets again especially for men and water proof outwear. 

Warm baby and toddler clothes. Women’s stuff similar to men, but there are fewer women than men coming at the moment.

Many of the refugees are young and seem kind of clothes conscious, so I can imagine that they would like the sort of stuff your students might wear?

Will distribute material from here to other projects across the island.”

So if you have any of the above, you could consider putting them in the container for Samos. As soon as we have details of the container, we will post its location and how to get material into it!

As always – THANK YOU.

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