On Monday morning, 6 February, a first major earthquake of magnitude 7.8 struck southern Turkey and northern Syria, causing massive damage. It was quickly followed by several deadly aftershocks. Many buildings collapsed, trapping their inhabitants under the rubble. Rescue workers are fighting against time to save as many lives as possible. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), about 23 million people will be affected by the disaster, including 5 million people who are already considered vulnerable. This is a humanitarian drama.
SOLIDAR SUISSE LAUNCHES EMERGENCY AID
In addition to the extent of the damage and the numerous aftershocks, people are struggling with extremely difficult weather conditions such as cold, rain and snow. The affected people need medical care, shelter and emergency relief packages with non-food items such as warming materials, blankets, tents, water, hygiene items, winter clothing and much more.
Through the European network SOLIDAR, Solidar Suisse immediately contacted local partner organisations to set up a first project to alleviate the greatest needs. We have a strong focus on disadvantaged communities with the most in need people in remote areas where organized aid has difficulty reaching. In Turkey, we work with an organisation that supports disadvantaged groups such as the Roma. The second partner organisation is active in Turkey with a focus on Syrian refugees and is already providing initial emergency aid.