Londoner launches clothing drive for Syria
There's a desperate need for winter clothing in the war-torn country
For a guy who's working toward a career in firefighting, Ferras Hayek is certainly off to a head start when it comes to helping people.
Hayek and a group of volunteers in London's Syrian community are busy gathering clothing donations to send to Syria, a country in recovery after years of deadly civil war.
"I have friends and family there who are telling me what's going on, and it's hard not to want to help," said Hayek, who was born in Canada to Syrian and Lebanese parents. "Now it's about rebuilding and helping out where we can."
Hearing about the desperate need for winter coming, Hayek ran a hastily arranged clothing drive in late September. It was such a success, he wants to do it again but this time in a bigger way, with the help of some volunteers and a stronger social media callout.
Anyone with items to donate can contact Hayek, who will arrange to collect the items via porch pickup.
Once collected, the clothing is sent to Syria where the group Syrian Arab Red Crescent distributes it on the ground.
Hayek is particularly keen to get donations of winter clothes, including jackets, hats and mittens.
"We're not too picky, it's whatever you can, if you only have t-shirts and summer clothing, that's fine," he said. "Anything you've got laying around that you're not using anymore, we'll take it."
Anyone wishing to make a donation can call Hayek at 226-984-7758.
You can find him on Instagram:
He's doing the pickups on Sundays.