The Mayor Councillor Elisha McCallion, is urging local people to support displaced refugee families by donating to a special text-giving service established in partnership with Trócaire.
The service will allow people to donate from £3 - £10 per text, and Mayor McCallion explained that the proceeds would be used to provide aid where it’s most needed.
It’s the latest in a series of initiatives launched by the Mayor and part of a cohesive campaign involving a range of organisations from across the city.
“So far the campaign has been going extremely well and I’m overwhelmed and delighted at the generosity of the public,” she declared.
“So far we’ve managed to collect thousands of pounds in our street collections and through initiatives organised by local businesses, the Chamber of Commerce and the trade unions.
“Now the public will have the opportunity to contribute directly by text, and no donation is too small - it will all help people in desperate need.
“We need to ensure that we’re taking a targeted approach to providing the appropriate type of aid where it’s needed, and I know that we can make a huge difference with the support of the people of Derry and Strabane.”
And there are other ways for people to make a difference she stresses, even if it’s not possible to offer financial aid.
“It’s vital that we remain vocal about our commitment to offering aid throughout this crisis and this week a special petition will be taken by the North West Migrants Forum to Downing Street pledging our local support for the refugees.
“There are a number of ways people can offer help, it doesn’t have to be financial. For example we are also beginning our door to door collections in the coming weeks which will require volunteer support. I am calling on anyone with any free time to help with the collections, and to register their support online at www.derrystrabane.com/mayor
“And people can simply show their solidarity with the refugees by supporting my You Can Stay Here Campaign by keeping a candle lit for one hour every Friday between 8pm and 9pm, and posting a picture to social media with the hashtags #ucanstayhere #fáilterefugees.
“I just want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed so far – even the smallest contribution will help in some way to alleviate the suffering of the innocent families forced to flee their homes and risk their lives in the hope of finding safety and comfort elsewhere.”
Anyone who wishes to make a donation by text can do so at the following numbers:
Text TROC15 £10 to 70070 to donate £10
Text TROC15 £5 to 70070 to donate £5
Text TROC15 £3 to 70070 to donate £3
For more information on the various initiatives, or to add your name to the Mayor’s volunteer register go to www.derrystrabane.com/mayor