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Dobova Volunteer Camp dissolved by Slovenian authorities

4 dicembre 2015

Information by Babi El Ahmadi, as of Dec. 2. 2015:

It’s over… Slovenia, Dobova, but especially ADRA Slovenija no longer wants civilian assistance!

After long periods of backstabbing and criticizing, Adra’s local coordinator found a police officer and together they came to us, thanking us for our help so far but saying they no longer wanted it. The reason they gave was that several Arabic-English interpreters had swarmed the station yesterday and behaved in a way that was deemed problematic. These interpreters did not belong to our team, but in any case, the UN had warned us last week to be careful because in every meeting Adra had discussed their intention to remove us from the site. Now they have found a made-up excuse to remove us and took the opportunity to do just that. Considering that we were allowed on the site by the chiefs of police and disaster recovery services, we don’t think this little prick has enough power to remove us, but we decided that under the circumstances we will not keep fighting. We will not fight an intellectual battle with an unarmed opponent.

Let’s see what exactly Slovenia is rejecting:

1. 5-600 children’s packages per day containing cheese, yogurt, croissant, fruit and dessert

2. 2-300 baby packages per day containing diapers, wipes, crackers, baby food and drink

3. 2-300 women’s packages per day containing sanitary pads, tissues, soap, toothbrushes, etc

4. Family packages containing milk, nutella, cereal, jam etc.

5. Women’s, men’s, children’s and baby clothing, winter coats, shoes, socks etc.

6. Volunteers working for free day and night, not only expecting no pay but willing to purchase anything needed with their own funds.

7. Volunteers included physicians with two degrees, teachers, ministers, all multilingual, including one who speaks 5 languages.

We were available 24 hours a day. If needed we made warm formula or found warm socks for infants.

We were a thorn in Adra’s side from day one, but we never understood why. Maybe they were afraid for their livelihood, maybe we really disturbed them, but very possibly the reason was mere envy and malevolence.

Now we will shake off the dust, pack up our supplies, spend a few days with our families we haven’t seen for so long, and prepare to accomplish our new plans, greater in scope than ever. (We will write about this in more detail later.)

Our thanks go out to the Sisters of Catez ob Savi for the beautiful lodgings where we could rest and freshen up; to our neighbor Mami, who is an awesome "chick", for the electricity; to our elderly neighbor for the water, and to the locals for the place where our tents stood. We are also thankful to SEM (Let’s Help Refugees) for the tents, tables etc; to the Iványi family and SOS Bamako for all the help; and to everyone else who donated items and labor to ensure that we could work more efficiently. Here they no longer want our help - we’re glad Slovenia has it so good that they can afford to refuse assistance of this magnitude.

Thank you to Slovenia for giving us the opportunity to assist refugee faamilies for five weeks. Thank you for the cooperation of civilians and for showing us how many good people there are among them.