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The Hidden Heroes of The Grenfell Tragedy
Hidden Heroes are those who are an inspiration to us all and want no glory, no accolades – simply that their stories will provide faith in humanity, by their demonstration of generosity, kindness, and selflessness. And, also to be an example we can all aspire to.
Epic CIC www.epiccic.org.uk is a London based social enterprise working with young people in difficult circumstances, and is one of our partner charities.
Along with the Emergency Services, other charities and local organisations, Epic played, and continues to play, a massive part in helping others during, and after, one of the most devastating tragedies ever to happen in this country.
In the exact words of Mary Mackle, Epic’s Director of Resources:
‘It was one of the worst days of my life. When I arrived it was totally overwhelming, with the flames and the chunks of plastic and the smoke and the smell. I joined others to help in any way that I could – I remember looking at the Fire Fighters, overwhelmed with exhaustion and wishing they could have done more, while knowing they had done all they could.
I walked under the Westway, saw children and young people – many in their pyjamas – and we helped them as much as we could. It was at that point I realised the scale of it all.
I went around the Community Centres and everyone congregated in the Latymer Community Church, which became a centre of help for donations. And the donations came from everywhere – local businesses donated money, householders brought bedding, local chemists cleared their shelves to help. I remember a local chemist handing over their entire stock of nappies! Over 65 local shops opened to do this, to cook food and to do anything they could to help.
Epic’s Becky McClaren (in photo below) based herself at Latymer Community Church, turned up with a loud hailer and brought much needed organisation to what was becoming fairly chaotic.
She was typical of the now hundreds of people doing whatever they could to help others. Becky, and no-one else, left until they had done something to help.
Actually, I think Becky is probably still there!
An extraordinary, unimaginable scene and loss of life. And in the midst of such appalling events and sadness and human suffering, so many people rushed to help.
I know I am lucky, as I will go home tonight, I am alive. And we are not going to stop, we are never going to stop. We are going to help rebuild this community that we love, in any way that we can – with rehousing, filling out forms or simply being there when we are most needed.
The reason I wanted to share this with you David is that much of the press around this tragedy has been about blame, and I just wanted to share with everyone reading this the number of people who gave their all over 48 hours and beyond to help, and give so many people in desperate need, some hope.