The reality of refugees

After the saturation of news on the refugee crisis, I decided to spend my last afternoon in Europe visiting the hundreds of refugees that have taken over the park behind the central station in Belgrade, Serbia.

Keen to do something altruistic, but unsure what, we took a supply of yogurt pottles, bananas, bread and snacks with us.

Even from a far you could see the many tents filling the park, but everyone looked surprisingly placid lounging in small groups in the afternoon sun.

I caught a young Muslim mums beautiful green eyes and gave her a beaming smile. I hoped the smile said something I couldn’t communicate.

As we entered the park all eyes were instantly on us. We ventured through somewhat awkwardly, until two young boys ran up to us eagerly eyeing up the snacks. We gave them a yoghurt each.

Suddenly we were surrounded by swarms of children snatching frantically. Everything we’d brought disappeared within seconds, and we left sombrely well aware of the insignificance of the gesture.

But it was a relief to see in Serbia they’d been given a restful respite, compared to some of the brutality of neighbouring countries.

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