Saskatoon volunteers collect donations for Syrian refugees

Donations of warm clothing, toys as well as kitchen and household items for Syrian refugees are starting to roll in at an art gallery on 20th Street. Staff at the Saskatoon Open Door Society say they're "astounded' by donors" generosity.

Riversdale art gallery offers small storage space

Warm coats, clothing, toys and household items are beginning to pile up inside this storage room at the A.K.A. Gallery. The Saskatoon Open Door Society is searching for a larger space to sort and organize donations for Syrian refugees.

Donations of warm clothing, toys, kitchenware and small household appliances are piling up for Syrian refugees.

The A.K.A. Gallery, at 424 20th St. W., is one of several places which has offered to store the goods for the Saskatoon Open Door Society.

The resettlement agency is gearing up to welcome close to 800 government-sponsored refugees from Syria. Julie Fleming Juarez said she's "overwhelmed" at the generosity shown by people in Saskatoon.

"It's astounding — both the people willing to donate and people willing to give time to this cause," she said. So many people have signed up to volunteer that she's now collected 185 names on a waitlist.

Donation points arranged by email

Hoping to avoid piles of donations being dumped on sidewalks, she urged anyone with donations to email and arrange a drop-off point. The email address is:

"We just want people to respect the places we're collecting donations," Fleming Juarez said. She noted that she is now receiving more than 150 emails a day. "We will send out a list of what we're accepting, as well as a list of locations and drop-off times." 

Fleming Juarez said winter clothing is in demand, particularly for women and children. 

The Saskatoon Open Door Society is asking people to refrain from bringing in furniture, bedding or linens. But it welcomes financial donations, which are tax-deductible.

As for the A.K.A. Gallery, here are the dates and times when it will be open to receive donations at 424 20th St. W.

  • Friday, Dec. 4, 2 - 6 p.m.

  • Saturday, Dec. 5, 1 - 4 p.m.

  • Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2 - 5 p.m.

  • Thursday, Dec. 10, 2 - 5 p.m.

  • Saturday, Dec. 12, 1 - 4 p.m.

  • Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2 - 5 p.m.

  • Friday, Dec. 18, 2 - 5 p.m.


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