Sending a message of hope and encouragement to people in Syria and Iraq

HELPING HANDS Church members are knitting squares to make blankets to send to families in war-torn Syria and Iraq.
HELPING HANDS Church members are knitting squares to make blankets to send to families in war-torn Syria and Iraq.
Have your say

By the Rev Kate Macfarlane, Anglican minister at Hart Plain Church, Waterlooville

Members of our congregation have been moved by the television news reports highlighting the plight of families in Syria and Iraq.

So now they are seeking to help those who have had to flee their homes, often with nothing but the clothes they are wearing.

Samara’s Aid is an initiative which sends humanitarian aid to refugees in the Middle East.

The project started in August 2014 when a young mum, Samara Levy, asked her friends to help her collect winter clothes for displaced people in Iraq.

It has quickly grown into a large project, which has sent 10 lorries to the Kurdistan region of Iraq and a container to Jordan carrying clothes, shoes, bedding, toiletries and some basic medical equipment.

Last year, members of Hart Plain Church sent 33 ‘banana boxes’ full of clothes and blankets to Samara’s Aid and we hope to repeat that this autumn.

At the moment we are busy knitting or crocheting squares and in September we will be holding a coffee morning where people will 
be invited to stitch the squares together to make warm, but also beautiful, blankets.

We will also be collecting good quality winter clothes and shoes for adults and children.

Samara’s hope is that people will share what they can with those who have nothing, giving the best of what they have rather than just their cast-offs, so that 
the aid that is sent is a message of hope and encouragement.

Many of the refugees have suffered terrible traumas, lost their homes and 
sometimes lost loved ones too.

The quality of our donations shows that they haven’t been forgotten and that we do care.

If you would like to know more about Samara’s Aid, you can find more information at

If you would like to get involved with our knitting project or would like more details about Hart Plain Church, please visit our website at

n Hart Plain Church, Hart Plain Avenue, Waterlooville, Hants, PO8 8RG.

Sunday services: 10am (Sunday worship).

Contact the parish office on (023) 9225 4452.

Alternatively, email