QPR provide fleet of coaches to collect child refugees from Calais

Joe Hall
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Queens Park Rangers calais
QPR are teaming up with Hammersmith and Fulham council (Source: Getty)

Queens Park Rangers chiefs have pledged to provide a fleet of coaches to bring more than 1,000 child refugees from Calais into the UK.

The Championship club has volunteered to assist Lord Alf Dubs's plans to rescue children eligible to come into the UK who have been left stranded by the recent destruction of the Calais 'Jungle' camp.

Hammersmith and Fulham council, QPR's local authority, says it has volunteer social workers ready to travel on the buses to France to assess and assist vulnerable children.

Read more: Arsenal continue Syrian refugee aid efforts

“There are children in France who are facing awful challenges, and seeing things that no child should see," said QPR chairman Tony Fernandes. "We are working in conjunction with Hammersmith and Fulham Council to provide transport for these children.”

Hammersmith and Fulham Labour councillor Stephen Cowan told the Guardian: "We have social workers on standby ready to go to France as soon as the French authorities give us the permission to go in and collect the children and generous benefactors such as QPR who are providing us with a fleet of coaches to collect the children.

"The situation for the children in France is chaotic, violent and dangerous. So many people have come up to me and said: ‘How can we leave children in these conditions in 2016?'"

QPR's donation has been praised by former captain Joey Barton who described it as a "fantastic gesture" on Twitter.

Other football clubs to take a lead in offering support for refugees include Arsenal, who donated £1 from every ticket sold for last season's Premier League home game against Stoke City to aid efforts.

In 2012 the Gunners also donated £400,000 to Save the Children's work in the region.

Other European clubs to have raised aid include Roma, who last season donated over €500,000 to the Football Cares fund, and Bayern Munich, who pledged a €1m donation and a training camp for refugees in Munich.

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