CamCRAG is a registered charity who organise regular weekend volunteer convoys from Cambridge to Calais. We also collect donations and funds to help refugees in Europe and beyond.
CamCRAG is a registered charity who organise regular weekend volunteer convoys from Cambridge to Calais. We also collect donations and funds to help refugees in Europe and beyond.

Volunteering

The scenes we see in the media of the refugee crisis unfolding in Europe have left many of us feeling helpless. But if we all play our part we can bring hope to the lives of those made homeless by war, persecution and oppression.

Money is always welcome – you can donate via the button on the right – but donating your time is much more valuable. It doesn’t need to be a permanent commitment – we have plenty of volunteering opportunities, ranging from regular hours every week to an hour or two when you have the time.

Join a convoy

Many of our volunteers have become involved by joining one of our weekend convoys to Calais, which leave Cambridge on Friday evenings and return Sunday evening. We spend Saturday and Sunday helping in a warehouse in Calais, which may involve sorting clothes, preparing food or other jobs. As Cambridge is a city of cyclists, we are always short of drivers and vehicles, so if you have a large car or minibus we’d particularly like to hear from you.

Read the convoys page for more info on what’s involved, when the next one is, and how to register.

Beyond convoys

We need IT geeks, social media savvy peeps, administrators and organisers, people with vans and strong arms, writers and designers, clothes sorters, tea makers and public speakers.

If you register on our volunteer database you can tell us your skills and interests and when you are available, and then we will only send you emails about opportunities that we think will interest you. Register online today at camcrag.org.uk/joinourvolunteers

If you have any questions please email volunteer@camcrag.org.uk.

Volunteering examples

Organise a fundraiser

The best way to raise funds and awareness is to organise your own local event. It could be something small, like a village jumble sale or a cake sale in your office or school, or something more arduous, like a sponsored bike ride or mountain climb: See camcrag.org.uk/fundraising for examples of previous fundraisers we have run and ideas for your own.

If you are planning a fundraiser for us please email fundraising@camcrag.org.uk and we will help you publicise it.

Join a sorting day

We organise regular sorting days in Cambridge to process the physical donations (e.g. clothes) that we receive. These are accessible to all, require no previous experience, and are a great way to meet other volunteers.Register on our volunteer database and we will send you details when we are arranging the next one.

Organise a donations drop

If you live in or near Cambridge you could organise a donations drop morning or afternoon, when local residents can drop off clothing and other material donations that we are collecting for refugees. Church halls, community centres and sports clubs all make good locations, but anywhere that has car parking and a large room can be used.

Please email donations@camcrag.org.uk before organising a donations drop event, to check what we are currently collecting (and not collecting!) and so that we can coordinate the logistics of picking up the donations and publicising the event.

Festival salvage

We usually go to one or two music festivals in the summer (sadly on the Monday after everyone’s left) to retrieve abandoned tents and sleeping bags that can be given to refugees in Europe.

Over the summer of 2019 our dozens of volunteers in communities around the East of England helped wash almost 1,000 sleeping bags salvaged from music festivals.

In September 2019 we held an all day tentfest to check, clean and repair salvaged festival tents. Over 70 volunteers did amazing work and processed almost 300 tents! Read more about it at camcrag.org.uk/2019/09/28/fantastic-tentastic-tentfest-video-and-press-coverage

Get sewing with the poncho project

The poncho project (so-called because it used to make ponchos) is currently making snoods and blankets for refugees in northern France.

If you have cutting and sewing skills they would love to hear from you – see camcrag.org.uk/ponchos for more info.