A plea for help


I have written before about the beauty of Algeria, the kind-hearted people, the delicious food and the fabulous villas that the fortunate live in but today my friends, I want to present to you the story of one particular family.  When I heard about the case I couldn’t quite believe it.  Basically, they live in a shed.  Imagine.

I have seen, heard of and visited people living in severe conditions and makeshift buildings before but nothing quite as bad as this.  As the picture above shows the living space is literally no more than a garden shed. Inside they have space for a mattress, a small table, a fridge and very little else.  In the past, attempts were made to extend the space by building another room but unfortunately lack of funds has meant the work remains unfinished.

 This hut is home to a woman and her two children-a girl aged ten and a boy of four. Their father, her husband is currently absent.  Without employment or any other means of income they manage to survive on  fortnightly donations of food from a relative.

Through  it  all  this lady dreams of dignity  and hopes that one day she will be able to provide for her children.  She knows how to cook and would like to sell cakes as a way of earning money but with no oven, equipment or space it all remains but a dream.

These people have nothing, they are in desperate need but with just a little bit of help our help their lives could become a bit more bearable enjoyable even.

The immediate priority is to provide them with essentials including food, clothing and school supplies.  They need everything.

The longer term aim is to complete the building of the extra room. The work is already partly done but it needs to be finished.  This would make a tremendous difference to the families living standards and at the very least the children would have space in which to sleep. Lastly, the lady needs an oven and cooking equipment so that she can start earning her own income.

There are lots of people living in heart-breaking conditions, these are the type of families that we support. This is just one case, a ‘special appeal’.  If you feel that you are able to help this family in any way at all please get in touch.  Nothing is too little, all and every donation is needed and very gratefully received.

I hope to send a special shipment for this family at the end of January. Until then I  will keep this post at the top and update you with any progress.

We can make a difference.

As always, my sincere thanks to everyone ~ Emma x      

***Update *** As promised here is a quick update on the special appeal- Many of you have made contact over the last week or so with offers to help- which is wonderful!  Donations received so far include quite a bit of clothing for the girl, a few items for the boy a scarf, tights and a jumper for the lady, soaps, felt tips, a sewing kit and £154.  Thank you so much.  Please keep it coming!!

**Update 9th Jan**

I am pleased to say that donations are continuing to arrive for this family. Items include weighing scales, wooden spoons and other kitchenware, toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, tissues, underwear for the children, some clothing for the little boy, a tunic top and a further £20. Thank you Helen, Rebecca and Phylis.

**Update 16/01/2010**

Yet again more things have been generously donated to this family in need. This week items included pencil cases, notebooks, cardigans, body warmers, clothing for the lady and an additional £10.  Thank you Claire, Maria, and Anna.



Filed under algeria

7 responses to “A plea for help

  1. It’s hard to know where to start for someone who has so little. Would it be more useful to send you funds rather than goods in this case, or are you collecting food and other bulky donations to ship out?

    I’d love to help, but I’d hate to send things she/you can’t use, or that would push shipping costs too high for you.

  2. algerianaction

    Thank you for your comment Helen,
    Realistically I think it is beyond the scope of this little charity to solve the family’s problems completely but I do believe that we can make some difference. I would like to send a suitcase or two of essentials and perhaps a few treats. I’m thinking toiletries, clothing for winter and summer, pencils etc. It would also be wonderful if we could provide the funds for something specific for example the roof for the new room or the cooking equipment. I’m waiting to hear of exact costs….
    We can only do our best!
    Emma x

    • Thank you – details are always useful! I can offer sets of new socks and pants for the children, a few really nice pre-loved t-shirts for the small boy, as well as toothbrushes, toothpaste and soap (of which I always have plenty if you need them!)

  3. claire

    Hi There, I would like to donate something to this heartbreaking appeal. I would happily send pencils and and writing books for the children. Could you e-mail me an address to send them to? Thanks, Claire

  4. claire

    Hi Emma. Just to reassure you that I haven’t forgotten about sending the pencils and books for this special appeal, life has been mad recently but I hope to get them in the post this week. You will definately have them by the end of January. Thanks.x

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