On Monday, Feb. 6, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Turkey and Syria, with a 7.5-magnitude earthquake following just hours later. According to the New York Times, nearly 49,000 people have died. In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, tens of thousands of people were left homeless in below-freezing temperatures, creating additional health risks.
And on Monday, Feb. 20, a 6.3 magnitude earthquake struck Turkey near the Syrian border, only weeks after the initial devastating earthquakes.
In response, the international community has rallied to send humanitarian aid resources to the countries, which have already been grappling with the global refugee crisis for many years. About 3.6 million refugees live in Southern Turkey, while Syria has long endured civil conflict and a strained health system, Direct Relief reports. In northwest Syria, which was heavily impacted, about 4.1 million people depend on humanitarian assistance, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
You can support organizations that are doing work on the ground. Members of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) community are already mobilizing and providing support for those in need. See below for the latest information on what the CGI community is doing.
This page will be updated regularly.
Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS)
SAMS, a global medical relief organization, is currently on the ground responding to the earthquake. There is an immediate need for trauma supplies and a comprehensive emergency response to save lives and treat the injured, the organization stated in a recent release addressing the crisis. SAMS has already evacuated two hospitals to protect patients and staff.
You can donate to the organization here.
The current death toll of #earthquake victims in northwestern Syria has risen to 111 & over 600 wounded, as documented by #SAMS. Total no. of casualties remains inconclusive & likely to rise with 100s still under the rubble. Our hospitals continue to receive and treat the wounded pic.twitter.com/4mkr0ZW5Dd
— sams_usa (@sams_usa) February 6, 2023
Direct Relief, which has a long history of response in the region, is mobilizing medical requests and financial support. The organization is currently focused on supporting search and rescue efforts in the near term and has committed $100,000 to AKUT, the leading search and rescue team in Turkey. Direct Relief has also committed $100,000 to the Syrian American Medical Society, which has already received more than 1,000 patients impacted by the earthquake.
Over the next several weeks, Direct Relief plans to increase the availability of medical items needed to treat a range of traumatic injuries caused by falling debris, crush injuries, etc.
You can donate to earthquake relief through Direct Relief here. 100% of all donations for the Turkey-Syria Earthquake are used solely on expenses related to supporting that response.
International Medical Corps (IMC)
IMC has begun mobilizing its response and will be supporting primary health care centers and public health facilities in Aleppo, Hama and Latakia with medicine and supplies. The organization is also working with the World Health Organization to potentially deploy an Emergency Medical Team. IMC’s team in Syria has already gone into communities to bring medical and mental health services, along with supplies such as blankets, hand sanitizer and sanitary pads. In Turkey, IMC’s Emergency Response Team is working through partners there.
You can donate here to help survivors receive urgent medical care and supplies.
We are assessing the situation and mounting a response to help people throughout the region whose lives have been devastated by this disaster.
Click the link below to help us provide lifesaving healthcare to people affected by these earthquakes.https://t.co/slrHHTa6TM pic.twitter.com/lkzjvKmzI4
— International Medical Corps (@IMC_Worldwide) February 6, 2023
A team of workers from the nongovernmental organization has been sent to Turkey to first focus on bringing relief supplies and assessing water and sanitation needs. IsraAID is also deploying experts in mental health and psychological support and emergency logistics.
Follow IsraAID’s Twitter account and check out their website for updates.
IsraAID is launching an emergency response after today’s 7.8 and 7.5 earthquakes in #Türkiye and #Syria that left over 2,300 dead. As we assess the situation using our previous #earthquake response experience, we will distribute urgently needed relief supplies in Türkiye. pic.twitter.com/m6rrscRKSR
— IsraAID (@IsraAID) February 6, 2023
Airlink is responding to the crisis by providing free airlift assistance for NGOs. The organization offers short, medium and long term response and plans to provide free air transport during all three phases. Airlink has already supported two NGOs in the region.
You can donate to Airlink’s response fund for the earthquakes here. Your donation will help Airlink assist multiple NGOs that are providing various types of critical aid to the people of Turkey and Syria, Airlink’s website states.
#TurkeySyriaEarthquake: Airlink is responding to provide airlift assistance for NGOs. We are securing free of charge flights for search and rescue teams and finding logistical solutions to get both skilled responders and aid supplies on the ground quickly. https://t.co/9G4jQugfuh pic.twitter.com/0LmLaeoPHr
— @AirlinkFlight (@AirlinkFlight) February 6, 2023
Along with delivering medicines and supplies (IV fluids, wound care supplies, surgical tools, etc.) to northwest Syria, Americares has supported 30,000 internally displaced children and adults in Hatay and Mersin, Turkey. In order to determine long-term mental health needs, Americares is also offering psychological assessments to people who are sheltering in emergency camps.
The organization has supported seven hospitals in northwest Syria and a hospital lacking power in Gazientep Province, Türkiye. In Gaziantep, Americares helped the hospital purchase generator fuel, allowing the facility to continue providing essential health services.
You can donate here to help Americares deliver medicine, medical supplies and emergency funding.
We are preparing to send medicine, relief supplies and emergency funding to restore health services for survivors of the devastating earthquakes that struck Turkey and Syria early Monday, impacting thousands of people.
For full press release, https://t.co/I0hN9OmvzI
— Americares (@Americares) February 6, 2023
Mercy Corps is prioritizing its response in Northwest Syria, providing shelter supplies; water; sanitation and hygiene services; and other essential items. The organization is specifically targeting the Idlib and Northern Aleppo governorates, which are underserved and vulnerable. As Mercy Corps works to gain a stronger understanding of communities’ evolving needs, the organization aims to provide families with cash aid to purchase fuel, food and other items.
Having started its work in Syria in 2008, Mercy Corps currently reaches almost 300,000 Syrians in Northwest Syria.
You can donate to Mercy Corps here.
Center for Disaster Philanthropy
The Center for Disaster Philanthropy coordinates international support to local NGOs and response organizations for active disasters around the world. They are already active in the region, and have been coordinating impact and critical needs assessments with their local partners. Through CDP’s Turkey & Syria Earthquake Recovery Fund, they are providing targeted grantmaking that prioritizes these critical needs. Visit the Center for Disaster Philanthropy’s Turkey & Syria Earthquake Recovery page for more information and updates.
World Central Kitchen
A nonprofit, non-governmental organization, World Central Kitchen provides meals in response to various climate, humanitarian, and community crises. The organization is on the ground and working with about 30 local restaurant partners to provide meals in the region. World Central Kitchen has already served 600,000 meals.
You can donate to the organization’s efforts here.
Follow World Central Kitchen’s Twitter account for updates.
Build Change is focused on supporting long-term recovery and resilience in housing and schools. The organization plans to send a team to evaluate building performance and safety; deliver advice, technical assistance, and resources about disaster-resilient housing to support local partners; and mobilize local staff to help rebuild collapsed homes and rehabilitate/strengthen salvageable structures.
Build Change’s experience with post-disaster housing assessments spans across 15 countries and 45 events.
You can donate to Build Change here.