Refugee crisis: What you can do to help?

A Crowborough woman is urging you to reach out to others in need and buy something to help someone stay warm this winter.

Having seen the terrible things happening throughout the world with the refugees situation, Leilani Mitchell, who lives on Green Lane, decided that she could not sit by Bundles of clothes, blankets and sleeping bags in her kitchenand do nothing.

She began scouring local charity shops looking for suitable items of clothing.  She’d also hunt for tents, sleeping bags and blankets, which she’d bundle up to send to places like France, Serbia and the Greek islands, where displaced refugees are in desperate need of clothes and shelter.

Leilani then began to let others know locally that she was collecting and invited people to donate suitable items.  She has been able to collect lots of goods that have been sent directly to people in need.  At times her house has been brimming with donations and she gets them out to those in need as quickly as possible.  Leilani will be taking a break from this in January but will be collecting again in February.

As a psychotherapist and trainer Leilani is always keen to make a positive contribution to the world, whether with individuals, community or wider afield.  She is a strong believer in community and the power for good that we have when they work together and connect with others.

She believes we are privileged to live in a society where we generally have more than we need.  We are not cold, hungry, traumatised and desperate.  We do not fear that our children will not survive because of war or malnutrition.

Photo Leilani Mitchell of Green Lane Crowborough in SussexLeilani said:

Imagine camping outside in winter.  These people have been forced to leave behind their homes and everything they own.  They have tried to fight and been killed in their hundreds of thousands and are desperate and traumatised.  Imagine leaving everything you know and love, to make a very dangerous journey with young children, pregnant woman and elderly parents with no clear destination or safety ahead.

How can we stand by and allow these people to suffer any more than they have already done.  If this was your family you would want someone to help. Together we can be a force for good and we can change the world, every little bit helps.

Wish List

Leilani has set up a refugee wish list which enables people to purchase items that are needed and delivered to Leilani who makes sure they are delivered where they are needed

Leilani makes sure things are packed ready to distribute and puts a small toy and something to eat in the pocket of each child’s coat hoping that this will bring some joy in a desperate situation.   As this year draws to an end and the new one begins Leilani asks us to join her in making a contribution to men, woman and children who have nothing, no home, no security and little hope for the future.

If you’d like to help Leilani in supporting others then click on the following link to view the Wish List.  The prices start at £1.69 for a pair of thermal gloves and every little bit helps.

Leilani runs the Link Centre in Newick, offering courses in personal and professional development.  They offer one and two day workshops for general interest and for those wanting to increase their own self-awareness and further development tools for managing personal and professional relationships.  They also offer part time training in counselling and psychotherapy leading to both national and international accreditation.

As a result of her contact with the volunteers who are working face to face with refugees, Leilani is also setting up some free online emotional support for these people as they are being traumatised themselves by what they are witnessing.

I thought one of the things I can do is set-up some online emotional support.  I’ve established a network of around 45 counsellors and psychotherapists, so far, around the world who will offer support for volunteers, someone they can talk to about coping strategies so that they don’t burn-out.

Get in Touch

If you’d like to get in touch with Leilani to offer help, or if you have some items that you think might be suitable to donate, you can find her on Twitter @Leilanimitchel and Facebook or email her at

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