By Diane Small
When model Alexandra Wynne returned from visiting refugee camps in Greece, Turkey and across Germany, her whole life changed. She had been volunteering during the months when the UNHCR recorded the highest amount of asylum seekers crossing the Aegean Sea, and she was astounded at the level of human suffering she witnessed.
From its illegal invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan to Libya and Syria, America and its allies have created the worst refugee crisis in history, even surpassing that of WWII. In Syria alone, 11 million people – half the population – have been displaced from their homes, and kind-hearted people who want to help are often confused as to where to donate, since groups like The White Helmets, which are supposedly there to help Syrians, have actually been associated with terrorist groups and also receive plenty of American and British government funding.
Alexandra asked herself: what can I do to help? And as a model, she knew that the fashion industry reaches billions of people daily. So she set out to make a statement in the best way she could: through fashion. She paired up with Olfa Ben Ali, the Editor In Chief of RE FUSE magazine, to create a fashion shoot for the publication, the sale of which would be donated to refugees in need.
From the refugee’s lifejackets and the solar lights distributed in the refugee camps to the beaded jewellery created by refugee children, each photo in the shoot below features an item that is reflective of volunteer and refugee experiences on the ground.
Alexandra strongly believes that how we address this refugee crisis and understand what is really happening now in the Middle East will define our generation. If you would like to help, be careful who you donate money to. The best bet is not to send money to Syria or any war-torn country (it’s often ‘lost’ before it can be distributed). It’s better to send funds to a truly grassroots organisation like one of these, or better yet, donate your time instead of money, just as Alexandra did.
6.Topless image with necklace
By Olfa Ben Ali – Editor In Chief, Curator & Initiator.
172 pages, 210x280mm, full color, lumbacked, €14,95