Charity ready to support Afghan refugees in Swindon – This Is Wiltshire

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A SWINDON charity has committed to supporting those affected by the crisis in Afghanistan. 
The Harbour Project currently helps around 50 Afghan people who arrived in Swindon before the Taliban’s takeover. 
And it says it is “ready and committed to playing as full a role as possible” to help refugees.
“We currently help around 50 Afghan people who arrived here before the present crisis, and who now fear for their families and friends as they receive reports of them having no access to food, shelter or money,” a spokesperson for the Harbour Project said. 
“While there is currently no safe way out for them, many people have been displaced without documentation and therefore fear they will not be able to access safe routes out of the country when they do become available.”
The charity is calling on Swindon Borough Council to put a plan in place to accommodate more refugees from Afghanistan. 
“We urge the UK government to offer sanctuary on a basis of need and however people arrive here, and not by quotas; and to do all that it can to secure safe exit routes from Afghan,” the spokesperson added. 
The charity has received several requests from people asking how they can help with the crisis in Afghanistan. 
Chief executive Claire Garrett said: “We are saddened and worried about the situation in Afghanistan and that many of our people have friends and family caught up in the current situation.
“We are concerned for everyone affected, wherever they are in the world.”
The government has pledged to take in at least 20,000 refugees – including 5,000 in the next 12 months. 
The Harbour Project spokesperson said: “We are very grateful to everyone who is offering us help in response to the situation in Afghanistan, and for the ongoing and longstanding support of many individuals and organisations across Swindon and beyond. 
“Although the Afghan community bears the brunt of the trauma now, what we are witnessing is representative of the pain and terror experienced by people from many other countries experiencing similar atrocities. 
“We remain united as the Harbour ‘family’ in supporting them all and each other.
“As a society it feels as though we have become immune to images of people in inflatables crossing the Channel to seek help. 
“These new scenes of parents handing children to strangers, or people falling from aircraft, remind us of what lies behind being a refugee in today’s world and the desperate journeys people are forced to embark on to find safety.”
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