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how do convoys work?

In all the years we have been travelling to Calais we’ve been perfecting our volunteer process. We base our trips on a 3-day, 2-night model, setting off Friday morning and back Sunday evening. We’ve organised this around the working lives of our volunteers to make Calais Light 100% compatible with work. Most people can request one day off work to volunteer - maximising the number of people saying ‘yes’ to volunteering in Calais.


Calais Light convoys are short, intense bursts of hard & meaningful work. And - we want you to have energy left when you get home to :

  • share your experience about the brutal truth of refugee life in Calais

  • talk about your Calais Light convoy weekend & fundraise, fundraise, fundraise funds for Calais Light so we can continue our urgent work

  • increase awareness of the need for more volunteers to support refugees in France AND the UK

  • recruit new Calais Lighters: friends, family, colleagues, supporters at church or mosque.


what does calais light do for you?

We’re like a mini-travel agency, we arrange & book everything for our volunteers: charity placements, car-sharing, experienced Continental drivers, European breakdown insurance, ferry tickets costs, the legal side, Covid info, documents & crucial communication, 2 nights B&B accommodation & 2 restaurant nights out. The meals together are very important. After work we relax & bond over a meal, new friendships are made. A lot of laughter happens.

Cost : c£95 all in bar some meals. (Price includes £10 donation to CL for all the heavy lifting).


Convoys leave Shenfield, in Brentwood, Essex on Friday at 10am sharp. You can reach Shenfield Station easily: a 23-min train from London Liverpool St. Please do arrive at 9.30am Friday with plenty of time to spare because we have ONE firm rule!! Calais Light always travels as a Convoy i.e. we don’t wait for latecomers as we have pre-paid ferries to catch. If you’re late – you’re left behind. No refunds, sorry!


Before you commit:

If you live far away, please arrange to stay locally or in London to ensure you arrive in good time. Please also think through your homeward journey after 9pm Sunday night, so you’re not caught unawares. We help with parking cars that will be left but it’s way better to come by train or be dropped off!

who do calais light convoys appeal to?

If you’re nervous about volunteering with refugees in France, don’t want to travel alone, are unsure how to book accommodation, want to keep costs down, can’t speak French, don’t have a car, can’t drive on the right or simply have no time to organise the logistics – we’re perfect for you!

If you just like our ethos – that’s fine too.

We make it easy to for people to say ‘yes’. We stop you ‘looking the other way’. Our job is to facilitate large temporary boosts of manpower to the refugee NGOs we support in France or the UK.

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