Weʼre raising £1,000 to Mark McDonald is the only Jamaican 'refugee' in Lesbos, Greece. He is disabled and sleeping rough, he needs our help for a safe shelter.
- 17 days to go
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Mark needs money to pay rent on a small room in Athens whilst he waits for corrective invasive surgery on his spine. His story reads like a film script...
Mark was born and raised in Jamaica but had to leave after he's peaceful activism of spoken word and poetry went against the ruling party the JLP. He's life became threatened and he was unable to acquire a visa for anywhere other than Turkey which he was told would be a safe place to stay until the situation had past. In utter desperation he made this journey but things didn't go to plan. As soon as he arrived in Turkey he was locked up for no reason and after being detained for sometime he went before a judge who accused him of travelling with fraudulent documents which wasn't the case. He was jailed for a further four months and then got attacked by seven men during what was supposed to of been a friendly backgammon game. He sustained a severe back injury which needed invasive surgery. After surgery in a low security part of the hospital Mark was helped by another patient to get away from the corrupt legal situation he found himself in. As soon as he was vaguely well enough he absconded and was smuggled to Lesvos in April 2017. With no documents and recovering from serious surgery he was forced to claim asylum from Moria camp there.
Mark is not looking for a permanent life in Europe. He never was. When you ask him what he wants his answer is both humble and simple. Mark would like to get his surgery sorted out in Europe where he believes the care would be better. He wants a chance to recover properly away from the physical threat of violence which made him flee his beloved Jamaica in the first place.
In the last year Mark has 5 months in Turkish jails, he has spent a month in hospital. For six months he endured awful conditions in Moria detention centre on Lesvos in pain and alone. Mark is in need of further surgery to rectify problems caused by the botched procedure on his spine whilst erroneously detained in Turkey.
Mark has been told he must wait between 10 months to a year for this surgery in Athens, Greece where he is now sleeping on the streets. Rent for somewhere safe with a bed is very cheap there and for just £500 he should be ok for five months at least. He is a very humble man who just wants to be back on his feet. This whole thing started when he took a stand for injustices and corruption which is something we all need to stand up for. Please give generously what ever you can afford even if just a few pence.
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