How to help victims affected by the earthquake between Turkey and Syria

Jhe devastating earthquakes that hit Turkey and Syria early on Monday are affecting some of the world’s most vulnerable people. More than four million Syrians who depend on immediate humanitarian aid live in the region, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

The first earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.8, was one of the strongest to hit the region in the last century, affecting an area already facing a cholera epidemic and harsh winter. More than 2,800 people died and thousands more were injured in the quakes, which struck as people slept in bed. First responders scramble to rescue people trapped under toppled buildings.

Turkey is the largest refugee hosting country in the world. About 3.6 million Syrian refugees live in the country after the long Syrian civil war. Many of these refugees live in southeastern Turkey, in the region where the earthquakes struck.

The humanitarian situation in Syria makes recovery even more precarious for the populations, according to the UN

“Unfortunately, the needs are growing rapidly in Syria and not everyone who needs help is visible. More than 75% of all sub-districts in the country are classified as being in severe, extreme or catastrophic conditions,” Acting UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Syria El-Mostafa Benlamlih said in a statement. . “We must act quickly to ensure that more communities do not slip into an inescapable loop of deprivation and negative coping mechanisms.”

The earthquakes that struck early on Monday February 6 were among the largest in the region for a century.

Lon Tweeten–TIME

An aerial view of a damaged building after an earthquake in Adana, Turkey, on Feb. 06, 2023. (Oguz Yeter—Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

An aerial view of a damaged building after an earthquake in Adana, Turkey, February 06, 2023.

Oguz Yeter—Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Some countries have already pledged to send aid. The UK has promised to send a team of 76 search and rescue specialists and rescue dogs to Turkey. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed condolences and said his government was mobilizing resources to help.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has also tweeted that it was launching immediate aid from its Disaster Response Emergency Fund to ensure relief efforts could continue.

Consider donating to the following organizations to help:

Syrian American Medical Society

The Syrian American Medical Society is a humanitarian organization working on the front lines of the crisis. They continue to serve the area even though at least one of their hospitals has been closed due to damage caused by tremors.

They are asking for donations to buy trauma supplies and continue to provide emergency aid to their patients.


The United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has also mobilized aid to Syria and is focusing on assessing the impact of the earthquake on water stations and any other service disruptions. It also assesses the damage schools face. UNICEF said another priority was helping unaccompanied children reunite with their families.

You can donate here to help.

Syrian civilians and members of the White Helmets work to rescue people trapped under a destroyed building following a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Syria, February 6, 2023. (Anas Alkharboutli—picture- alliance/dpa/AP)

Syrian civilians and members of the White Helmets work to rescue people trapped under a destroyed building following a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Syria on February 6, 2023.

Anas Alkharboutli—picture-alliance/dpa/AP

The white helmets

The White Helmets, a non-profit organization made up of 3,000 volunteers who help the Syrian community, said they needed more equipment and supplies to continue numerous search and rescue operations in the area.

The organization previously helped provide primary care for patients with COVID-19, offered ambulance services for those with more severe cases, and also regularly provided maternal health care.

You can make a financial contribution at the following link.

Turkish Red Crescent (Türk Kızılay)

According to a press release, the Turkish Red Crescent has more than 240 staff and hundreds of volunteers in the disaster area who provide mobile kitchen and catering services in the area. They also send tents, blankets and beds.

The organization is asking people to donate blood as they continue to ship blood from their existing supplies throughout the day. The Red Crescent has provided its bank details for donations in a Tweeterbut you can also donate here.

International Rescue Committee

The International Rescue Committee (IRC), an organization that responds to the most serious humanitarian crises, works in more than 40 countries. “IRC teams are on the ground working tirelessly to ensure the safety and well-being of our staff, local partners and those affected,” said Tanya Evans, IRC Country Director for Syria.

Consider making a gift here.

People gather around a bonfire following an earthquake in Kahramanmaras, Turkey, February 6, 2023. (Cagla Gurdogan—Reuters)

People gather around a bonfire following an earthquake in Kahramanmaras, Turkey, February 6, 2023.

Cagla Gurdogan—Reuters

save the children

Save the Children is working in north-west Syria and Turkey to best assess the aid needed, but plans to support affected communities with emergency kits amid harsh winter weather. You can make a contribution to their children’s emergency fund at the following link.

Global donations

Global Giving, a nonprofit that connects other nonprofits with donors, has launched the Turkey and Syria Earthquake Relief Fund, aiming to raise $5 million. dollars to meet immediate food, shelter and water needs. Once the initial need is met, the funds will support longer-term recovery efforts.

HOPE project

Project HOPE, a global health and humanitarian aid organization, has deployed emergency teams to help on the ground. You can support their work here.

Humanitarian Aid Foundation

The IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation has served communities affected by disaster and war since its inception in 1992. It collects donations to send water, food and shelter materials to people in need. . They also have a mobile soup kitchen that tours the area. Consider making a donation here.

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