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03-08-2023 | Latest News , Asia & Pacific , Europe

Six months after the earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria IFRC calls for urgent support to tackle immense needs for survivors


Six months after the devastating earthquakes in Türkiye and
Syria, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) calls for urgent
support to affected communities still reeling from the monumental impacts of the disaster.

Although recovery efforts are well underway, the earthquakes have had an immeasurable impact,
leading to the loss of thousands of lives and affecting millions more.

“We have seen astounding resiliency in communities, but people still find themselves stuck in a very
difficult situation,” says Ruben Cano, IFRC Head of Delegation in Türkiye. “Many people in Türkiye –
particularly those who lost their homes and income – are still struggling with their day-to-day needs,
including paying for food, rent and other necessities. A ‘normal’ life is still far from reach.”

Many people are falling deeper into debt to help cover their needs, while they recover and build back
income sources. More than 50 per cent of families supported by the IFRC and Turkish Red Crescent
are taking on new debts after the earthquakes as the country battles inflation and a drastic increase in

In Syria, the reality for many people is even more dire – the earthquake's impact, coupled with 12
years of conflict, has rendered recovery exceedingly challenging. The economic situation continues to
push already vulnerable communities deeper into hardship and uncertainty.

“The rescue phase of the earthquake response may have concluded, but the emergency situation
persists,” says Mads Brinch Hansen, IFRC Head of Delegation in Syria. “Immediate international
support is needed right now, both to meet immediate humanitarian needs, as well as to build people’s
resilience and rehabilitate vital infrastructure and community services , which are on the brink of

The IFRC, together with the Turkish Red Crescent and Syrian Arab Red Crescent, have been at the
very heart of this response since day one. Teams have been providing immediate relief to affected
communities, including food, water, shelter, healthcare and mental health and psychosocial support .
Financial support through cash and vouchers are helping many families recover as best they can , as
is support for rebuilding businesses and opportunities for income.

The IFRC Emergency Appeal in Türkiye and Syria launched two appeals for each country, totaling
CHF 500 million. There is still a funding gap of 74% in Türkiye and 57% in Syria. Further support and
funding are urgently needed to make a significant impact on the lives of those affected and empower
individuals to rebuild their lives and contribute to their local economies in both Syria and Türkiye in the
long term.

For more information or to coordinate an interview, please contact: 
Global: Anna Tuson: +41 79 895 6924
Syria: Mey Al Sayegh: +96176174468
Türkiye: Sevil Erkus: +905366449122

Notes to the editor:

More about the operation in Türkiye: click here 

The Turkish Red Crescent has been providing 416 million meals to affected communities and
responders in the last six months, while also ensuring people have clean water, essential hygiene
items and health services. Teams have set up safe spaces offering mental health and psychosocial
support to many children, parents, first responders and other individuals who need it. To help
survivors buy the items they need as they recover, cash assistance has been given to more than
137,000 families, in partnership with the IFRC and WFP. In partnership with the IFRC, the Turkish Red
Crescent has reached over 590,000 people with cash and voucher assistance.

For the short-term, multipurpose cash assistance gives people the opportunity to buy what they need
the most, but it will also be a vital tool to provide livelihood assistance to those who lost their jobs or
their sources of income. IFRC and Turkish Red Crescent are currently ramping up aid support for
livelihood assistance to people with a focus on agriculture, animal husbandry and small businesses.

The IFRC Emergency Appeal seeking CHF 400 million to support the Turkish Red Crescent response
has already been funded up to 30% (CHF 119.8 million). The current funding gap is 74 % (CHF 280.2

More about the operation in Syria: click here

Communities affected by the earthquake in Syria are grappling with the daily struggle for survival, as
access to necessities like food, water, shelter, and medical care is becoming increasingly scarce.

Since day one, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) staff and volunteers were the first on the
ground to respond, and they have provided more than 12 million humanitarian services including food,
water, shelter, healthcare and mental health support to the affected population.

The Syrian Arab Red Crescent continues to be the main humanitarian actor in Syria and is covering
the impacts of the earthquake on a broad scale, including food, water, shelter, healthcare and mental
health support, and items to meet people’s basic needs. It will continue to support communities over
the years to come. So far, SARC provides 80% of the Syrian population with safe water through
treatment and maintenance of damaged water infrastructure and has a network of 229 health
facilities, which represent a lifeline for hundreds of thousands of people across the country.

The IFRC Emergency Appeal seeking CHF 100 million to support the SARC response has already
been funded up to 53% (52.5 million CHF), with a current funding gap of 47%.

About IFRC
IFRC is the world’s largest humanitarian network, comprising 191 National Red Cross and Red
Crescent Societies working to save lives and promote dignity around the world. - Facebook - Twitter - YouTube

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