In 2016 a group of congregation members from St Stephen's Church in Twickenham felt moved by the news of the Refugee Crisis and wanted to do something to help in a very practical way.

Putting together a care pack of brand new items for an expectant mother, baby, family or a vulnerable woman in need of humanitarian aid is a wonderful way to show how deeply we care and that they have not been forgotten.

These packs will be sent to displaced people, refugees and people in need of humanitarian aid in Syria and Iraq.

This care pack was given to this Syrian woman this week. She is one of the 6.3 million internally displaced people (IDP'S) in Syria. She was very touched to know that someone in the U.K. cared enough to pack this box and send it across the world for her and her baby.

Choose one of the four shopping lists below and follow our step by step instructions to ensure that your box complies with customs regulations and will arrive without delays.

PLEASE NOTE: If you plan to collect items or money from other people (friends, church, schools etc.) to fill care packs YOU WILL NEED TO REGISTER AS A COLLECTOR before you start. It is essential that we have a record of who is collecting aid in our name.


Choose and print one of the following up-to-date shopping lists.


Each list has been checked with our local partners to ensure that we are sending the most useful and appropriate items. For this reason we ask you to include ALL OF THE ESSENTIAL ITEMS LISTED (we cannot ship any box that is not complete), and to ONLY INCLUDE ITEMS WHICH ARE ON YOUR CHOSEN LIST.

If you are unsure about anything or need help sourcing some of the items, we’ll be happy to advise you. For any question, please email Maït,

Everything must be NEW (or new hand-knitted), packs unopened, with tags and labels. Once you have gathered all the essential items, feel free to add some of the optional items and/or more of the items that will run out quickly like baby wipes, cotton wool, soap, toothpaste.

Online shopping: you should be able to buy everything on each of the lists from either or You will have to place two separate orders (one in the groceries home delivery section of their website for toiletries and hygiene products; another one in the clothing section for items such as pyjamas, underwear and blankets.) Please choose the largest packs available for nappies and washing powder.

Ordering from outside the UK: choose the Baby shopping list below and use the website where you should be able to order all of the items. Delivery is free for orders over £45 within the UK. For delivery address and how to proceed, see STEP 7 below.


Banana boxes are extra strong cardboard boxes with lids that you can get free from many supermarkets (Sainsbury's, Tesco, Coop, Waitrose) or your local greengrocers. These are just the right size for packing and shipping.


Cover the hole in the bottom of the box with a piece of cardboard or a flattened plastic bag. Fill the box with all the item on the shopping list, ticking them as you go to make sure nothing is forgotten. (We cannot send boxes that do not contain all the essential items listed).



Choose and print one of our printable messages of encouragement in Arabic/Kurdish:

Take a photo of you, your family or friends who have put the box together and stick onto the printed message. It will mean a lot to the person who will receive the care packs to see some friendly faces and know that they are not forgotten. Add the message into the box. Cover the hole in the lid with a piece of cardboard or plastic. If you’d like to gift wrap the box, please only wrap the lid as we will need to check the contents before sending.


Tape the checklist on TOP of the banana box lid, over the hole (ideally, slip it into a plastic pocket to prevent tearing): it contains the information that customs must be able to see. Please do not tape the lid closed.



Please make a small donation to contribute towards transportation costs of sending your box to the Middle East in one of our lorries. We suggest £5 per banana box.


  1.  Fill out the information request form below in order to bring your box to one of our UK storage hubs. You will be sent details of our current storage hubs, with specific dates and delivery times for people to bring their boxes.
  2. Deliver your parcel to Worthing - must be prearranged if you are coming in person.
  3. Send your parcel. We recommend Hermes (, a very affordable and reliable courier company. They will come and collect your parcel, or you can drop it off in one of their collection points. The banana box shouldn't be taped shut so we suggest that for shipping, you fit the box inside a strong refuse sack (or wrap it in a sheet of plastic) and then secure the parcel with packing tape.
  4. Online shopping and delivery: buy the contents of a full care pack online (order ALL of the items from ONE of the four shopping lists above; the baby box is the easiest to order online) and get it delivered to us. We will then pack everything you have bought into a box and add one of our generic messages. If you email a photo of yourself or the group who put the care pack together, we will add it to the message.


You can also send your care pack by courier for delivery Monday to Friday, 8:30am-5pm only to the following address:

SAMARA’S AID APPEAL, c/o Link to Hope, Links House, Park Road, Worthing, West Sussex BN11 2AN

Please don't deliver items to this address in person unless you have pre-arranged this with Helen, Samara or Tamsin in advance.