Afghan family swim kit donations


We're collecting swim kit for Afghan families to use while staying in temporary accommodation  - please donate any unwanted or grown-out-of swim costumes, floats, goggles etc to Kiri or Sue at swim sessions. Collections finish on Friday 12th Nov 2021. On air during Woman's Hour on Wednesday 27th Oct 10am


Twelve year old Bella said: "Its only fair to give everyone the same chance to learn how to swim and also to enjoy swimming. I hope these donations help the refugees settle into UK life and forget their pain. I can only imagine how difficult things are for the Afghan people right now and anything we can do we should do".


Madeleine is donating her unused swim kit to one of the families: "I'm really pleased to be able to help the families from Afghanistan. Everyone should have the opportunity o enjoy swimming. It's such a fun sport and is a great way to get fit."

The pictures here show six year old Zehna and her three year old brother, Amir. They are in a London hotel after fleeing Afghanistan with their parents, Ahmad (46) and Zare (34). Their escape from their country was really difficult: they tried on three separate occasions to join the mass of people trying to make it through to the airport. On the third try they waited for more than two days, with the sound of gunfire echoing around them. They are so relieved to be in Britain, but it is extremely difficult living in a hotel room and they know they're likely to be there for a long stay. They came to this country without anything - so no clothes or toys for the kids and certainly nothing much to occupy themselves. Ahmed says he thinks they and many others could benefit from access to the pools either in hotels or via the offer being made by some councils for free swims.

"We are living with a lot of stress and upset, with mental anguish and trauma because of what's happened to us. It would be so good for the mothers and children to be able to swim together. It's not just the physical, it is an emotional release aswell. It's something I'd like to do with my children and we are so happy with the donations. People here have been very kind - we can't thank people enough. It is something that is very important to our children and to us."

The family is one of the first to receive the club's donated kit.

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