Piles of beds waiting in the parking lot in front of the old hotel to be lifted inside. The family comes from the defense storage facility in Straw, Twente. “It was quick work,” Hengjan-Bab says on behalf of the military. “I got a call last night, and they’re already here.”
While the fire brigade works to lift the elevator to get beds and mattresses into the rooms, washing machines are running tests inside. “It’s quite impressive to see what has already been done,” says Alderman Raymond Wanders. “There are microwaves, refrigerators and kettles in the rooms. People can relax here first. To get their lives back on track.”
Volunteers gather in the lobby to roll up their sleeves. “There are many social organizations that help,” Wanders says. Refugees can stay for several months in the former Fletcher Hotel. “This is about emergency shelter. People are coming this way. Now they need a roof, a bed and bread. Then we’ll look further.”
The spaces in the WMD office are also livable. There is a kitchenette on the premises with refrigerator, microwave, small cooking utensils, toilets and showers. Hoogeveen municipality supplies the family.
It is likely that a bus carrying refugees will arrive in Hoogeveen next Monday, otherwise it is likely Tuesday morning. Then the refugees are transferred to the WMD office.
The space will remain available for refugees until the end of this year. Employees can move to offices in Assen and Emmen.
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