**SCROLL TO THE BOTTOM TO SEE HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT REFUGEES & BUY YOUR HOLIDAY GIFTS AT THE SAME TIME!**
Twenty miles across the English channel, I went to work everyday and spoke with teenage girls who woke up with tear gas in their eyes, police boots in their ribs. On the outskirts of the grey, suburban neighborhoods of Dunkirk and Calais, police soak donated sleeping bags and tarpaulin in tear gas concoctions, rendering them useless. Children sell their bodies so they can pay for a way to meet family across the channel. The first cases of trenchfoot since World War One are running rampant. It sounds like a dystopian reality, but it’s not, and it’s here.
I could go on explaining the police intimidation and horrific conditions that make up life for refugees in Northern France right now (and this is a good post if that’s what you want to read) – but something would be missing. The actual refugees. Continue reading
This post is the final installment (although I will continue to write about this topic in many forms – your feedback is welcome in the survey at the bottom of this post!) in my diary posts on volunteering in a refugee camp in Northern France with the Roland Levinsky Memorial scholarship. You can read the first three posts here: 1, 2, 3. Continue reading
This post is part of my short series chronicling my experience volunteering in a refugee camp with the Roland Levinsky scholarship. You can read my first and second posts to catch up on my thoughts so far. Continue reading
Well, the time has come for me to actually volunteer! The scholarship donors informed me that they like to keep up to date on the experience via social media and blogs, so I figured, well, obviously Endless Distances is the perfect outlet for that.
I am of the opinion that as people who like to travel, as people who enjoy culture (of any kind), we have a duty to protect refugees. We are the people who have seen the world. Who have seen the art in Russia and tasted the street food in China and drank in the pubs in Scotland. We know that the world is full of people who are DIFFERENT than us, and more importantly, we value this: we take their art home, we wander their museums, we recreate their recipes, we fill scrapbooks with bits of their culture. Is it not our duty to protect these people of different cultures when they need us?
Since I originally started drafting this post, there have been two iterations of the US proposed Muslim Ban, both denied by federal judges, and my fervor has only gotten more intense. This post is a long time coming, but I’m very excited to share with you my views (and some advice) on why travelers should support refugees. Continue reading
November was one of those months for me that, looking back, seems like it could have been four months. How was I working in France at the refugee camps at the beginning of the month and now I’m here, sitting at my friend’s kitchen table in northern Germany typing this out? I love doing these recap posts because it makes me remember how much actually happens in life. Continue reading
If you’ve been following my instagram, you’ll see that life lately has been cozy, pink, and full of gluten free bagels: I have Ecomama Hotel Amsterdam to thank for that! With my spike in traveling recently, and also some reflections after working in the refugee camps, I’ve decided to honestly invest in making more ethical, sustainable, and socially responsible decisions with my money when I travel. (You’ll even see that I’ve added a new category in my blog menu: Ethical Travel). Whereas I previously looked for a low price/high design ratio in travel accommodation, I’m now adding sustainability into the mix. Continue reading
In the spirit of the Brits (who start making Christmas dinner reservations in June) I’m ready for the holidays a bit early this year: I’ve made a list of unique gifts for every kind of traveler! This is the first time I’ve ever put together a holiday gift guide because, well, I’m lazy. But it was worth the effort I hope, as I believe I’ve found some true gems! Whether you are (or are looking to buy gifts for) the nester with wanderlust, the backpacker, or the overpacker, I’ve got you covered! Continue reading
The birthday month. The best month (apple orchards, crunchy leaves, haunted houses, cinnamon sugar donuts, new beginnings, chocolate & pumpkin birthday cake) but a weird one this year as it was my first birthday within memory that I haven’t been in formal education. Continue reading