The capital city sees its fair share of fundraisers for many different causes, but this one was very different. Ethar Relief sponsored an incredible and inspiring evening hosted by Family Events designed to bring together members of all communities and unite them in their support for the “forgotten” Eritrean refugees in East Sudan.
Almost 450 people attended the unique Family Dinner, held on the evening of Friday 23rd November at the Royal Nawaab restaurant in West London. The attendees were treated to a three-course meal and a wonderful lecture themed around the concepts of patience and gratitude.
More than £105,000 was raised on the night, which will go towards building a hospital in Shagrab, the largest refugee camp in East Sudan.
Ethar Relief is a UK-based humanitarian aid organisation that operates mainly in East Africa. The charity was set-up in 2006 and serves to ease the suffering of refugees. Following the event, Ethar Relief stated that:
“This was a phenomenal and unprecedented effort from the attending audience who consisted of supporters, well-wishers, and concerned local people interested in contributing to Ethar Relief’s cause.”
The audience were shown moving evidence of the sheer hostility of the refugee camp, which contains over 60,000 refugees living in squalid and dangerous conditions.
Ethar Relief said:
“The lack of healthcare facilities means that thousands of lives are needlessly lost, including mothers losing their babies, and children being born with severe disabilities.”
The charity further added:
“The spread of diseases such as malaria and cholera can claim hundreds of lives in a month, and lack of food, clean water and the absence of medical aid are major contributors to the countless deaths every year.”
The Shagrab Hospital project will cost £250,000 in total, and its construction is “urgently” needed to bring respite to the suffering inhabitants of the refugee camp and surrounding areas. Ethar Relief stated that the fundraising evening, “went some way to achieving that dream, but there will be a lot more to do in the coming weeks and months to make it a reality.”
Commenting on the evening the CEO of Ethar Relief, Saeed Abdelrahman said:
“I am overwhelmed by the response of this community. The real wealth of the people attending today is their positive attitude, their amazing concern for those in need, and their generosity towards them. I feel we achieved both our aims today: raising awareness of the issues facing the refugees, and raising money that can directly help them. We’ve proved we can make difference – together, hundreds of people here in London can save thousands of lives.”
Ethar Relief works with some of the most vulnerable refugees in recent history, who have suffered in silence for over 50 years. Over 2 million people have fled Eritrea to East Sudan since 1967, and today half a million refugees continue to live in the most inhumane conditions.
Saeed Abdelrahman spoke to Islam21c’s Chief Editor Dr Salman Butt on Tuesday about the story of Eritrea’s refugees.
To contribute now, and for more information on how you can support Ethar Relief or get involved click here