After a very brief period of relative peace, last week saw two large clearances of the Dunkirk camp in which hundreds of people had their tents and shelters destroyed.
Hundreds of police and CRS accompanied by heavy machinery arrived at the site in the early hours of the morning on both days. Teams of officers proceeded to systematically remove people from their shelters and then use huge excavators and bobcats to destroy the dwelling.
After having forced people to remain in this specific location for the last 5 months the French authorities have now announced that they intend to move people again. With spring around the corner, the local authority has decided it wants to develop the current site for public use and has proposed a new site which is further away from the town and, of course, less visible.
Over the past years, we have seen this happen many times and know very well that with the population currently so high and steadily rising it will require a huge operation to relocate the entire community. This will, in turn, create great distress for the hundreds of people who depend on the support of both organisations and the individuals who help this community.
With no way to prepare, other than to be ready to adapt and respond, our team are continuing to be present each day as always. With so many requests currently, we are distributing massive amounts of equipment and general NFI each day, as well as providing our usual range of services and support.
Our incredible volunteers have worked tirelessly this past week, communicating closely with the community and ensuring people are re-equipped with the essential items they need after the clearances and able to request any other specific items they need.
Do you want to help? If you work well under pressure, enjoy working closely with people and would like to be part of this incredible team, please get in contact!
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Photo credits: Human Rights Observers (HRO)