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Canadian Climbers in Kalymnos Rally to Support Arriving Refugees

Canadian climbers visiting Kalymnos, Greece, urge others to donate.

Alex, Amanda and their son Dax Geary are on a climbing trip in Kalymnos. It is a trip thousands of Canadians have made in the past. Those there now, however, are witnessing first hand the Syrian refugee crisis.

“Late Thursday night/early Friday morning (Oct. 29/30 2015) two boats full of refugees sank off the coast of two Greek islands,” wrote Amanda on her blog. “One of the islands was Kalymnos – the island my son Dax, husband Alex and myself are on currently vacationing on while rock climbing.

“Over 138 people were rescued, however, 14 were confirmed dead (nine of which were children and infants). Many are still missing.”

One of the two sinking boats last week near Kalymnos.  Photo Reuters
One of the two sinking boats last week near Kalymnos. Photo Reuters

Alex and Amanda have stepped up to do what they can. “We delivered a couple of grocery carts worth of toiletries, diapers etc. to the Refugee Support Centre in Kalymnos today,” Alex told Gripped today.

“So I had a chance to speak with the ladies who are dealing with the supplies and handing things out to the Refugees.”

Amanda and Dax Geary with the groceries they deliverd on Nov. 3.  Photo Alex Geary
Amanda and Dax Geary with the groceries they deliverd on Nov. 3. Photo Alex Geary

Alex was told the number one thing the refugees are in need of is 15- to 20-litre backpacks.

“If climbers currently in Kalymnos are able to spare a backpack when they leave that would be great,” Alex said. “We have organized a box at ‘Glaros Snack Bar’ in Masouri for climbers to leave packs, then we will deliver them personally to the Refugee Support Centre every three to four days for the next couple of weeks.

“My wife Amanda will post updates on her website, where she has posted some background info on why we decided to help and donations can also be made.”

Alex is currently tracking down an address people or gear companies can send packs and we will update the story shortly.

If you’re looking for a way to help, reach out to Amanda and Alex via Amanda’s website here, on ‘Help for Refugees in Molyvos here or on Red Cross here.