How the Bearded Broz are helping Ukraine’s refugees

BirminghamWorld catches up with the Smethwick charity which is gathering support from across the country - and the USA

The humanitarian crisis in Ukraine is deepening every day.

Those fleeing their war torn neighbourhoods are left to rely on the goodwill and compassion of strangers.

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We speak to one organisation who are doing their bit to support those whose lives have been devastated by Russia’s invasion.

Bearded Broz, Ukraine Appeal, Birmingham

Bearded Broz was founded in 2017 in response to the Grenfell disaster, and has since worked tirelessly to support those struggling, offering relief to over 28,000 families in the West Midlands since its inception.

After witnessing the impact of the Ukrainian crisis, Imran and his team decided to set their sights much further afield.

As powerless as many of us feel witnessing atrocities take place far away from us, campaigns such as these may act as a comforting reminder that offering at least some relief to those who need it most is isn’t always beyond our reach.

Bearded Broz, Ukraine Appeal, Birmingham

Imran Hameed, founder of Bearded Broz, says: “So just over half a million people fleeing a conflict, landed on two different borders, for example Poland. So what we’re doing is we’re raising awareness of a situation - and we need clothes.

“We need people to donate clothes to us. Toiletries, nappies, sanitary towels, whatever it is, right, so that we can give somebody this on the border. That’s what we’re doing. I mean, when it comes to support, we’ve received support from up and down the country, literally people from Cornwall, London, far afield as Scotland.

“And we received an email today from a school in New York who are collecting for the Bearded Broz. That they’re sending us stuff that the kids have collected via courier!”

Imran Hameed, founder of Bearded Broz

“It was literally 12 hours into it. And I was sitting there with the wife, and the little one, and it was raining outside. And we were watching the telly.

“And I said, would we have put the baby outside in the rain? She said no, of course not. I said, you know what, we’ve gotta do something. We’ve literally got to do something. We can’t just sit here idle, not doing anything. So this is what we decided to do. “

“Why should help us is because we’re one human race. Simple as that. You know, colour, religion, creed, makes no difference. Right? Somebody in trouble is somebody in trouble. If you and I expect our children to eat then I expect their children to eat. It doesn’t matter what language you speak.”

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