Children's author launches auction to fundraise for refugees

Children's author launches auction to fundraise for refugees

Children's author Fiona Dunbar has set up a website for authors and editors to auction off their services to raise money for refugees.

The pieces being auctioned include a creative writing session with Geek Girl author Holly Smale (HarperCollins), manuscript advice from editor Karen Ball and signed copies of books by Piers Torday.

The auction is intended to "provide urgent aid to refugees held in camps around Europe, and to unaccompanied minors with a legal right to come to the UK," Dunbar said.

"There are currently around 88,000 unaccompanied children in refugee camps in Europe; Interpol reports that 10,000 have gone missing in the past year," the website said. "Funds raised by this auction will go directly to these charities: Help Refugees, Safe Passage and Islington Refugee Centre." 

Dunbar said: "This humanitarian crisis is so vast, I think that for many it’s overwhelming. I know a lot of amazing people who have given their lives over completely to working to help refugees, in Calais and other camps…others who have set aside prolific careers in order to give months of their time. Having spent just one week volunteering at the Khora Refugee Centre in Athens, I understand why. You do not walk away from this. You experience it, and it changes you forever.

"You see the reports on the news, night after night, and you think this is awful, unbearable…and you feel rather helpless. Okay so you give a little money to charity now and then. And it feels like a bottomless pit. The aim here was to do something bigger, more sustained and coordinated. I just want to give these people some hope. And make their lives bearable, for the time being."

Bids are being accepted on the auction's website until 8pm on Monday 26th September. To offer up services, contact Dunbar via Twitter.