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A Social Logistics Initiative from Hamburg – with an international impact

A project from Hanseatic Help e.V.
in Hamburg, Germany

Hanseatic Help is a charitable social logistics initiative in Hamburg, Germany. We collect, sort and deliver donations in kind to refugees, homeless and other fellow humans in need and distribute them worldwide. Simply helping where help is needed!

Philine Kruse
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About this project

Simply helping where help is needed.

We started in the summer of 2015. On the premises of the Hamburg trade fair, where 1200 refugees found temporary accommodation, Germany´s largest clothing bank developed from a spontaneous, grass root movement. Initially just a couple of neighbors bringing spare clothes and helping to sort and distribute them, „Kleiderkammer Messehallen“ quickly became a phenomenon. We founded the charitable Hanseatic Help e.V. in October 2015.

Voluntary engagement is our foundation. People from all walks of life work together and share their time and their skills. All aid goods for refugees, homeless people, women´s shelters, children´s homes or hospices are donated or purchased with the help of monetary donations.

We developed our own IT-based storage system, which helps to process donations, storage and deliveries. Up to 50.000 donated items per week, and up to 10 deliveries per day.
As of February 2016, we rolled out more than 5 Mio. items. About 150 organizations in the larger Hamburg area receive deliveries from us.

More than 65 truckloads of donations reached people in need elsewhere:
What is not currently needed in and around Hamburg is used to help in other parts of Germany as well as in global crisis regions, such as Northern Iraq, Syria, Haiti, or Greece.
Our work is effective – and it is being recognized. In December 2016, Hanseatic Help e.V. received the prestigeous Marion-Dönhoff-Förderpreis from the influential magazine DIE ZEIT, ZEIT-Foundation and Marion-Dönhoff-Foundation.
Here are a few examples of what your donation can achieve:

Purchase of high-demand items
In addition to distributing donations, we purchase items that are in particularly high demand. Things like underwear, shoes, warm clothing (especially men´s small sizes) and sleeping bags are bought in bulk and passed on to our partner organizations. 
Purchase of cardboard boxes
Sometimes, helping is as simple as a cardbord box. We deliver the relief goods in cardboard boxes. Some are donated; we also reuse boxes, if at all possible, but we still have to purchase lots of them in order for the donations to reach the recipients.
Running of the organisation
Every day, there are costs to cover for running our operation: things like paper and tape, food and beverages for the volunteers, cleaning supplies. The list goes on. Support for the organization helps us to help.
Make the life of others easier! Help us to help :-)
For further information (currently German only) on current and past projects visit
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