Pittsburgh Helps Turkey and other groups raising funds for earthquake relief

Members of the Pitt community and people throughout Pittsburgh and the world are calling attention to humanitarian efforts in Turkey and Syria after devastating earthquakes on Feb. 6 left more than 40,000 dead and millions impacted.

The Turkish American Student Association of Pitt, Carnegie Mellon University Turkish Student Society, Duquesne University Turkish Students and the Pittsburgh Turkish American Association are collaborating through Pittsburgh Helps Turkey and the Turkish Philanthropy Funds to raise money to help the earthquake victims.

Turkey native Müge Kökten Finkel, director of the Ford Institute for Human Security and a faculty member at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, this week wrote an essay for Public Source, where she said her parents were safe but friends reported missing loved ones. “This week, in my safety, all I could do was to bear witness to growing agony, and listen to the sheer burden of life piercing through the TV screen,” Finkel wrote.

In an email circulated by the Turkish Nationality Room committee, which is headed by Carnegie Mellon professor Zeliha Dilsun Kaynar, the Assembly of Turkish American Associations suggested people contribute to the following organizations to help in the recovery and rebuilding efforts.

AKUT Search and Rescue Association: https://www.akut.org.tr/bagis-yap

AFAD, Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority: https://www.afad.gov.tr/depremkampanyasi2

AHBAP, Anatolia People and Peace Platform, a non-governmental civil society organization: https://ahbap.org

Finkel and other colleagues at Pitt also suggested donations to UNICEF and Save the Children.

At noon Feb. 17, GSPIA will hold an expert panel on Earthquake Recovery in Turkey and Syria. Panelists will include Finkel, GSPIA Emeritus Professor Louise Comfort, and Süleyman Celik of Anadolu University. The virtual panel is co-hosted by the Ford Institute for Human Security. Find the Zoom link here with full access information below. You do not need to register in advance.

Carnegie Mellon also released a list of several charities working in Turkey and Syria that have been vetted and suggested by members of the CMU community

Bridge to Turkey Fund

Brother’s Brother Foundation

Direct Relief International

Doctors Without Borders

IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Syrian American Medical Society

Turkish Philanthropy Funds