December 2018: Interview
Karl Weskamp is a driver at Universal Transport and, together with his colleague Gerd Wesenberg, they brought thousands of Christmas parcels in a six-truck convoy to Romania. In our interview he is telling us what was so special about this transport and why it was very emotional.
Mr. Weskamp, can we call you Santa’s helper and how do you feel in this role?
(Laughing). It makes me happy. It was beautiful to see children’s eyes shining, especially as they only have little happiness otherwise. Coming to areas which are heavily affected by poverty, most children won’t get a present for Christmas, imagine coming to a Romanian orphanage with around 200 children, once you get to see these children holding a Christmas present, open it, find games or some warm clothes, it fills your heart with love to see their smiles. And that comes from the heart. These children give you a unique feeling during the Christmas season.
Tell us a little more about this journey and where you stopped off to deliver presents.
On the 1st of December we went from Paderborn to Koblenz, this is where we loaded 37 pallets with Christmas presents just on our truck. Then the journey continued over Austria, Hungary to Romania. Arriving in Brasov we handed out the parcels in the region around the city: We went to five children homes and orphanages, eight elementary schools and three kindergartens. In total, we handed out over 4,000 parcels. At the end of this seven-day tour, we would have also driven around 4,000 kilometres. Yes, it was stressful, but when you look into the eyes of the children holding a gift in their hands, you know: it was well worth the effort.
Was this trip not supposed to go to the Ukraine initially ?
Yes, that was the intention, but because of martial law in parts of Ukraine, the initiative, which has been organizing this Christmas presents convoy for years, needed to reschedule at short notice. So my colleague Wesenberg and I left with six other trucks for Eastern Romania. After all, all these presents packed by other children in Germany should reach their destination and we accomplished this. We have been able to experience these special moments in each of the 16 stations we stopped around Brasov. The children in the homes or schools were so happy and grateful when they got a parcel. It was wonderful to see this happiness this Christmas.