Volunteer convoys

Want to spend a weekend in Calais making a real difference to the lives of refugees?

Our volunteer convoys leave Cambridge on Friday evenings, returning Sunday evenings. You will work two full days with NGOs based in the area who provide direct support to refugees.  

CamCRAG will help organise the car share and pay for the ferry or train crossing, and arrange accommodation at the youth hostel in Calais.

Registration for convoys usually opens 4 or 5 weeks before the convoy, and closes 2 to 3 weeks before the convoy.

Upcoming convoy details

Our next convoy will be 20-22 September 2024.

Registration will close on 5 September.

The briefing meeting will be held on 10 September.

Provisional future convoy dates

18-20 October, 22-24 November, 13-15 December

17-19 January, 21-23 March, 11-13 April, 16-18 May, 27-29 June

To register for a convoy you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old on the day the convoy leaves Cambridge
  • Possess a valid passport issued in the last 10 years with at least 3 months unexpired from the last date of the convoy.
  • Be prepared to leave Cambridge early on the Friday evening (usually by 6pm) and return on Sunday evening.

Read our convoy handbook

Before you register please read our Convoy Handbook which includes all requirements for joining our convoys, FAQs, our safeguarding policy and code of conduct.

What’s the need?

Although the Calais camp was dismantled in 2016, there are still many hundreds of refugees living rough in the scrublands around the town, including many children and teenagers, and they are under constant pressure from the police and hostile local government. 

The aid groups operating from the warehouse run by L’Auberge des Migrants, which include Refugee Community Kitchen, Collective Aid, Calais Food Collective and Project Play, continue to distribute food, sanitary kits, clothing, tents and sleeping bags, and CamCRAG is proud to support them by sending weekend convoys of donations and volunteers. The warehouse also provides aid to associations operating in Dunkirk, Paris and elsewhere in Europe.

What would I do?

There are numerous tasks that need doing in Calais, and no previous experience is required. Volunteers sort and pack donations, peel and prepare food, load and unload vans. No one is paid and there is a great team spirit – and we often receive an excellent lunch provided by Refugee Community Kitchen (RCK). 

Though we often work with RCK and they are very keen for support, they are sadly not able to operate every weekend due to volunteer shortages. It is therefore possible that you will be working in the warehouse for the weekend. Be assured whatever work you get involved in you will be much needed and appreciated.

Please note that convoy weekends are quite physical and the environment is a working warehouse so you do need to be in general good health. There are many tasks so jobs can be found to suit your physical ability but it is not a suitable environment for those who find movement difficult. 

What’s it like?

“From the moment of signing up everything was super easy! You hardly have to organise anything yourself and everything is amazingly run. As for the actual trip, everyone was super helpful and the atmosphere was great! It’s so amazing to see so many willing volunteers really get stuck in and contribute to the community spirit that was so evident throughout the weekend!”

– Órla

Convoy reports