Turkey-Syria earthquake: 5 ways to help raise funds for victims

A series of powerful earthquakes that hit the Turkey-Syria border in recent weeks have left millions of people injured, displaced and in need of aid.

Two weeks ago, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake killed nearly 45,000 people in the two countries. Earlier this week, the area was rocked once again by fresh 6.5 and 5.8 magnitude tremors, which killed at least three people and left more than 200 injured.

The first earthquake marks Turkey’s worst since 1939. It was followed by more than 6,000 aftershocks.

The international community has mobilised to send aid and support to address urgent humanitarian needs in Turkey and Syria, as local rescue teams on the ground continue to search for survivors and clean up the devastation caused by the earthquakes.

On 15 February, the UK committed £25m to support the earthquake recovery effort and fund emergency relief, including tents and blankets for families who have been made homeless and deploying medical expertise.

In addition, a number of appeals launched by non-government organisations, charities and companies – including The Independent – have appeared in recent days as people search for more ways to help from home.

Here are five appeals you can help by donating or making purchases in order to fundraise for urgent aid.

The Independent’s Turkey and Syria Earthquake Appeal

On Thursday 16 February, The Independent launched its appeal for help in raising urgent funds for Turkey and Syria.

All funds raised will go to the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Turkey-Syria earthquake appeal.

The DEC brings together 15 UK charities to raise funds quickly during times of crisis overseas, including Oxfam, the British Red Cross, Save the Children and Islamic Relief.

Since launching its Turkey-Syria Earthquake Appeal, the organisation has raised more than £100m to help people left “homeless in freezing winter conditions”.

Donate to the Turkey-Syria appeal here.

A Bake and Raffle for Earthquake Relief

Bakers in London will hold a bake sale and raffle to raise funds for emergency relief in Turkey and Syria.

All proceeds from the event, which will take place on Sunday 26 February, will go towards Choose Love, Ahbap and Medico International. These organisations are working on the ground in both countries to help survivors.

Bakers taking part in the sale include Honey & Co, Crumbs & Doilies, Toad Bakery, Benjamina Ebuehi, Ravinder Bhogal and Ottolenghi Test Kitchen members Noor Murad, Helen Goh, Chaya Maya and Verena Lochmuller.

Raffle prizes include meal vouchers from leading restaurants, kitchen equipment, a barbecue, vouchers for celebration cakes and more.

Kurdish chef and writer Melk Erdal, who is the lead organiser of the event, said: “The scale of devastation is unimaginable and continues to unfold. The death toll in the thousands continues to rise, many more have been injured and millions have been left without homes in freezing winter conditions, in desperate need for shelter, supplies and food and drink.

“The impact of the disaster will reverberate in the region for generations. With this comes the urgent need to rally together and show solidarity.

“The affected regions have a large representation in London and we are already overwhelmed by the support of those who have offered to help. A fast, large-scale response is necessary and so many people have offered to do what they can.”

Raffle tickets cost £5 and entrants can buy as many as they want. The bake sale and raffle will be held at Holloway Model Bakery in North London between 12pm to 4pm on Sunday 26 February. More information can be found here.

East London Earthquake Appeal

Berber & Q, a restaurant specialising in the art of barbecuing based in East London, has launched a dinner appeal to raise funds for the ongoing crisis.

The restaurant has teamed up with several other top chefs from the area to hold a special five-course dinner on Monday 27 February.

All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Choose Love, with tickets costing £100 each. There will also be a raffle, called “The Draw”, which has been described as “kind of like entering an Omaze house raw, but EVEN MORE East London”.

Chefs contributing dishes to the dinner include Josh Katz and Jeremy Borrow or Berber & Q; Chris Leach of Manteca, Shoreditch; Helen Graham, Bubala; Luke Findlay, Supa Ya Ramen; and Ramael Scully, Scully.

Find out more here.

British Alevi Federation

The British Alevi Federation represents approximately 300,000 Alevis (a religious and cultural community in Turkey) living in the UK. The organisation has been running its Turkey Earthquake Appeal since day one of the disaster.

They have also been organising trucks full of essentials to displaced people, and have sent a delegation of people to go to Turkey and help distribute aid.

You can find more information on the British Alevi Federation’s fundraiser here.

Tamer Hassan’s Turkey appeal

British actor Tamer Hassan has launched an appeal and aims to raise £100,000 for emergency relief in Turkey.

The Football Factory star, whose daughter Belle appeared on Love Island, told Sky News earlier this month that he had “lost” family during the earthquake. However, he later confirmed they had been found and were safe.

He launched a GoFundMe and said he is currently in Cyprus working with volunteers to “gather as many supplies as we can, sending them to the most affected areas”.

“I have close friends and family in some of these affected areas and the stories I am hearing first-hand are indescribable and images there are no words for,” he wrote.

“We are in need of blankets, water, food, tents, baby food, nappies… everything you can imagine that keep these desperate people going.”

Find Hassan’s GoFundMe here.