It’s the right thing to do to show respect for people who have become refugees.
A clean blanket is no small thing when one is subjected to daily indignities living in inadequate camps.
And what message does it give a person to take their blanket after use and trash it?
It’s the right thing to do for the environment.
So far we have saved over 600 tons of material from becoming landfill in beautiful Lesvos and other parts of Greece.
Decomposing material releases methane; a harmful greenhouse gas and a significant contributor to global warming.
It makes no sense to throw away perfectly good blankets and sleeping bags.
Would we do this in our homes? Use our bedding and then throw it away rather than wash it? We constantly ask this question of UNHCR but are told that they have warehouses of blankets so they can “afford” to throw them away. Can the donors afford to have their money thrown away in such a cavalier fashion?
Economically it makes more sense.
Traditionally the UNHCR blankets are thrown away after being used.(??!!) Washed to hospital standards by Dirty Girls, for €3 each, it cost less than replacing them for €6 or more each. So far, Dirty Girls has saved UNHCR donors over €1,000,000 by preventing many, many thousands of blankets from being thrown away after sometimes just one night of use. We wash, they throw.
Meanwhile, we are creating jobs for locals in a country which is suffering economic difficulties.