April 26, 2016
My involvement in Fuze stems from my relationship with the founder of our project, and the
love of my life, Daniela Alejandra Pulido-Lopera.
For me the story all started back in early August when she started telling me how she
wanted to start a project that would help deal with the current refugee crisis. For a few days
I just went along with her ideas about how we could hire a van, fill it up with aid, take it over
the channel and distribute it amongst the camp members. At that point to me it seemed
ludicrous, something that would really benefit the world we live in and yet was completely
unattainable, something that governments and huge charities would be dealing with, not
just a group of friends with no financial backing and no official recognition.
How wrong I was.
The more I have been involved with Fuze Beyond Borders and other groups giving out aid on
the ground, the more I have realised that it is precisely these organisations, the ones with
little training/financial backing/genuine experience, that are actually making the difference
day to day. We do not sit around in chambers debating the outcomes and financial
implications. We do not worry about the PR impact this may have on us and how it might
lose support for our other campaigns. We simply find out how we can help, and help. The
beauty of Fuze is we are not a complicated, hierarchical organisation. Everyone is entitled to
an opinion, that opinion is valued, and from those opinions we form the best course of
action possible. No politics, no sponsors and no priorities other than helping those in need.
When we first made a trip out to the camps it was with our close family and a few select
friends. We sought advice from those on the ground daily and took only what they said was
needed. Tents, chairs, baby clothes and shoes were the priority. We also packed two
football goals. Our idea was that even though these people might not be able to speak the
language, we could communicate through sport. The idea was a success. We found that all
the adults in the camp wanted to help us set up the goals and that all of the children were
completely hooked on the idea of having somewhere to play games. The reaction we
received completely overwhelmed us and we are still in contact with many of those who
helped build the goals that day. It showed us that in spite of our differences we all had a
common ground on which we could communicate.
Since our first trip the camp has changed unrecognisably. We have visited 4 times since and
each time it becomes a harder and harder task dealing with what we see. In my eyes the
conditions these people are living in are sub-human. The mud, the smell and the damp
make it an unpalatable place for all but those in dire need and the only help these people
seem to get is from organisations such as ourselves. We are doing all that we can to help yet
we do need further support. Please take the time to read through our website and give all
the help that you can. We genuinely cannot do this without you.
Thank you for your time.