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In the early morning of February 6, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake happened near the Turkish/Syrian border. At this time, more than 20,000 people were killed and thousands more injured, trapped beneath the rubble of collapsed buildings. Rescue and recovery work is continuing. “What is being reported at this point may only be the tip of the iceberg,” says Allan Calma, Lutheran World Federation global humanitarian coordinator. "Temperatures are dropping and it is snowing in much of the region, with freezing temperatures expected in the coming days. Urgent access to shelter is a priority with many people fearing to shelter inside due to aftershocks."

The ACT Alliance has many members working in the area who have been responding to humanitarian needs. “As the scale of the disaster continues to be discovered, ACT members are checking in with their own staff teams, conducting rapid needs assessments, and already working to provide life-saving supplies to impacted people,” says the ACT Alliance. 

PWRDF immediately allocated $35,000 to the ACT Alliance to support its members providing food, blankets, mattresses and medical aid in affected communities in Aleppo, Hama and Latakia. ACT member the Middle East Council of Churches states “all the Churches in the Middle East have put their resources at the disposal of the affected and displaced people due to the earthquake, since the first moments of the disaster… The Churches in the Middle East, which always supports their people, will spare no effort in doing all they can to relieve their pain and lead them towards prosperity and progress.”

How you can help?

Please keep the people affected by this devastating earthquake in your prayers. Donations can be made to support PWRDF’s response online, or over the phone by calling 416-822-9083 (or leave a message toll-free at 1-866-308-7973 and your call will be returned.) You can also donate by mail. Send your cheque to PWRDF, 80 Hayden Street, 3rd Floor, Toronto, ON, Canada, M4Y 3G2. Please indicate Turkey and Syrian Earthquake in the memo field.