A GIBRALTARIAN has helped raise a staggering £157,000 for impoverished migrants camped in Calais.
Dan Teuma, 29, is part of a team dedicated to helping struggling families hoping to enter the UK.
His big-hearted campaign began after an eye-opening visit to a migrant camp with girlfriend Jaz O’Hara in August.
Originally planning to make a documentary on the camp – known as ‘the jungle’ – he was so moved by the plight of the camp’s residents that he decided to launch an appeal instead.
Money that had been raised for the film through website JustGiving was then channelled into a new organisation called CalAid.
“We couldn’t believe the level of support we were getting,” Dan, a proud llanito, told the Olive Press.
“I remember JustGiving calling us to say we had raised so much money, a record in fact, that we needed to take serious action.”
CalAid is helping provide refugees with tents, clothes, food and water.
“I think it’s important for Gibraltar to see that it can make a difference away from the Rock,” added Dan, who still visits three times a year.
“I want Gibraltar to become globally-recognised as a helping-hand when these kind of crises occur.
“One day, when I’m done traveling, I plan to move back home and help set up a welfare organisation,” he added.
For more information on CalAid and to donate, visit: www.calaid.co.uk
From the Rock to the Jungle
WHEN he first stepped into the ‘jungle’ refugee camp in Calais this August, Dan Teuma didn’t quite know what to expect.
Nowadays the camp has become his second home.
Gibraltarian Dan didn’t know what to do with his life after returning from Australia this year, but now has one of the most unusual but necessary jobs in the world.
As a refugee liaison officer, he wakes up at 5am before spending the entire day in the camp, meeting refugees, hearing their stories and working out how CalAid can help them.
CalAid is the organisation set up by Dan, girlfriend Jaz O’Hara and a small group of friends, with the help of volunteers.
“There was a negative feeling behind the whole crisis which we wanted to avoid, and instead find the human stories behind the headlines,” Dan, 29, told the Olive Press.
“Calais is one of the world’s worst refugee camps which people don’t expect, because it is in France.
“Calaid will continue raising money and putting donations into the camp throughout the winter.
“Our main focus is to make sure that these people have food, tents and warm blankets. This is literally saving people’s lives,” he added.
CalAid has so far raised £157,000, as well as van-loads of donations of clothes, tents and blankets.