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COMMUNITY MATTERS took us six weeks to reach the point when we had enough to do that.” Faraday, a specialist one-to-one study skills tutor and mentor in higher education, is used to helping people; it’s what she does for a living. She says the response from the public shows that the vast majority want to help the displaced families in Syria, too. And she has a ready answer to those who argue that the disaster is too huge for an organisation such as OHOB to make a difference: “I say that we ARE making a difference. How can we not? We’re sending food, shelter, toiletries, all the essential things that people need in order to live so that they have the capacity to move forward. “But in actual fact, there hasn’t been much negativity. Most people have been overwhelmingly positive and supportive. Instead of saying ‘we can’t do anything’ people are saying ‘what can we do?’ There’s no political agenda to this; it’s just about helping people who need help.”

As Faraday was talking, more and more volunteers were arriving at the Quickstore storage depot in Saltash to help with the packing, giving their time on a lovely spring Saturday. This consignment headed to Syria on May 14, but the work continues for OHOB. What started as a sleepless night and a subsequent Facebook page is now an organisation with its own website and it could soon become a registered charity; Faraday is currently in the process of making the application. This summer she intends to visit some of the refugee camps in Greece and ultimately, she aims to visit the camps in Syria: “I want to see where all these things are going, I want to see the difference it’s making. It seems the natural thing to do. “The amount of work doesn’t phase me at all. I wake up feeling happy and positive and energised. I have a passion, a drive, to help people – and I’ll do this until I don’t have to do it any more. We all have a role to play in this world and a place to find, we just need to find it. And I’ve found mine. “But the premise of the charity is not about what I am doing, or what I have set up, it is about the love and support shown by the people of the South West; Open Hearts Open Borders belongs to them. It is their charity. It is about their love for humanity, their compassion for others and their desire for peace. Love is an infinite resource, it never runs out. As long as we have love we can be, do and have whatever we want. At the core of OHOB is love, love of people and love for humanity.”  

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Visit the website and Facebook page to find out about fundraising and awareness events, collections and which items are needed. info@ohob.org.uk http://www.ohob.org.uk/ www.facebook.com/groups/ openheartsopenborders/

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Profile for Cornerstone Vision

The Plymouth Magazine June 2016  

Plymouth's popular and biggest circulation "lifestyle" magazine delivered to 45,000 homes every month.

The Plymouth Magazine June 2016  

Plymouth's popular and biggest circulation "lifestyle" magazine delivered to 45,000 homes every month.