Tuesday, 2 February 2016
I have been back for eleven days and I still don't know how to answer the question 'how was Calais?'. It feels weird describing it as good considering the reason I was there. Yes I did have a nice time meeting new people and there was a strong sense of camaraderie. But at the end of the day it is a horrible and desperate situation.
If I had to summarise what I saw and experienced in 'The Jungle' with one word it would be hope. Just a never-ceasing hope despite the dire situation. Everyday hundreds of people face perilous journeys in the hope of a better life for themselves and their families. Even after facing death and loss they still have hope. This hope is so evident in the camp.
However is also hard to come away from this situation without being angry. It is hard to meet twelve year old boys who have lost their families and are living in a 2x2 shelter and not feel bad about how little your government is doing. The fact is that there are fellow humans living in these horrible conditions so close to our doorsteps and our politicians, the decision makers, do not care. I am angry and sad and disillusioned.