The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) Turkey-Syria Earthquake Appeal raised £101.5 million in its first fortnight, with the funds already providing urgent relief for people affected.
The earthquakes have killed more than 44,000 people, injured more than 100,000 and displaced hundreds of thousands of families. The UN said last Tuesday that 1.5 million people had been made homeless in the south of Turkey.
DEC charities have been helping people in both Turkey and Syria by providing emergency shelter, medical care, hot food and food parcels, blankets, bedding and other household items, clean water and safe spaces for children.
The DEC Turkey-Syria Earthquake Appeal was launched on 9 February by actors Daniel Craig and Tamsin Greig on TV. Sir Michael Palin and the Reverend Richard Coles also voiced radio appeals. It raised £32.9mn on its first day.
The total includes donations from Their Majesties The King and The Queen Consort and Their Royal Highnesses the Prince and Princess of Wales, as well as £5 million matched by the UK Government through the UK Aid Match scheme.
Actor Daniel Craig, who presented the TV appeal on ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky, said:
“The public’s generous response to the DEC’s appeal for survivors of the earthquakes in Syria and Turkey has been incredibly moving to see.”
Sir Michael Palin, actor, comedian and presenter, added:
“It is bitterly cold in Turkey and northwest Syria and it’s hard to grasp how families are coping. DEC charities and their local partners on the ground are helping people get through this crisis with emergency support, and will help them rebuild their lives in the months ahead.
“I was pleased to be able to support the DEC appeal by raising awareness, and I’m delighted it has raised so much so quickly.”
14 of DEC’s 15 aid charities are responding in Turkey and Syria including Islamic Relief, Oxfam and the International Rescue Committee, working with locally-led relief efforts.
Saleh Saeed, Chief Executive of the DEC, said:
“The UK public have once again excelled and supported people when they need it most. All of us at the DEC are incredibly grateful.
“Donations are already helping and will continue to provide emergency shelter, warm blankets and food for the families who have lost their homes, urgent medical support for the injured and psychosocial support to children to help them start to cope with their experiences.
“DEC charities continue to rapidly assess the ever-changing situation but urgently need support to help scale up their response as the situation unfolds and humanitarian needs continue to grow.”