Feast of support: Auction, cookout and ‘world’s most expensive waffles’ raise 300,000 kroner to help refugees

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Perhaps it’s a bit contradictory for folks to be eating well to show their support for those facing dire plights, but they were also willing to pay very, very well to provide that help.

A trio of events in Longyearbyen during the past week raised about 300,000 kroner for the Norwegian Refugee Council’s efforts to assist those fleeing the civil war in Syria. Nearly all of it, about 289,000 kroner, was from a buffet and auction at the Radisson Blu Polar Hotel where Mouawia Lababidi, a Syrian who’s been living in the Longyearbyen since 2010, presented an overview of the crisis in his homeland.

“I am dumbfounded by what you have achieved in such a short time,” wrote Linda Jeanette Gresslien, an NRC official, in a Facebook post following the event. “I can promise that the money that goes to NRC will be put to very good advantage.”

About 12,000 kroner was raised during a sale of “the world’s most expensive waffles” (100 kroner each) at Svalbardbutikken and another 3,000 during a “Food in Nature” beach party last weekend next to the Svalbard Sailing Club.

About Post Author

Mark Sabbatini

I'm a professional transient living on a tiny Norwegian island next door to the North Pole, where once a week (or thereabouts) I pollute our extreme and pristine environment with paper fishwrappers decorated with seemingly random letters that would cause a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters to die of humiliation. Such is the wisdom one acquires after more than 25 years in the world's second-least-respected occupation, much of it roaming the seven continents in search of jazz, unrecognizable street food and escorts I f****d with by insisting they give me the platonic tours of their cities promised in their ads. But it turns out this tiny group of islands known as Svalbard is my True Love and, generous contributions from you willing, I'll keep littering until they dig my body out when my climate-change-deformed apartment collapses or they exile my penniless ass because I'm not even worthy of washing your dirty dishes.
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