A Coventry charity is appealing for the public to get behind their emergency appeal to support disaster relief efforts following last week’s double earthquake in Turkey and Syria.
Feed The Hungry is collecting aid donations ahead of planned shipments to the earthquake zones in the coming days.
The death toll has reached more than 41,000 following the 7.8 magnitude quake last Monday. Aftershocks were felt throughout the day including two further earthquakes of 6.5 and 7.5 magnitude.
They struck as Feed The Hungry’s CEO Gwyn Williams was en route to Bucharest as part of the charity’s latest mercy mission to support Ukrainian refugees.
He said: “As we were travelling to Bucharest early on Monday morning to arrange delivery of aid to Ismail in Ukraine, we never imagined that our plans for the week would take a dramatic turn. The second powerful earthquake struck just as our emergency aid relief team arrived in Bucharest.
“As we journeyed to the warehouse straight from the airport we were already planning our charity’s response to this tragedy, connecting to the warehouse facilities run by our partner organisation Bread of Life, to see what was immediately available for diversion to Turkey – blankets, sleeping bags, tents, hygiene and food were all ready to roll. This did not delay our trip and provisions for the people of Ukraine as we were still able to load 20 tons of aid into three vehicles. Our attention to their needs did not diminish – but now we need to replenish our resources as quickly as possible.”
Whilst the food and resources started coming into the Feed The Hungry warehouse, Gwyn and his team were busy drawing up plans in Bucharest to access the affected areas in Turkey, from organising visas for lorry drivers, letters of authorisations, connecting with teams of people in the affected area ready to store distribute and cook food, and ensuring all the teams work as safely and sensitively as possible.
Working with Samara’s Aid in Syria, where there are three clinics in the affected area, Feed The Hungry is asking the public to support their Emergency Appeal to enable them to send aid shipments in the first week in March – including food, hygiene products, blankets, camping equipment and warm clothing.
Items can be dropped off at Feed The Hungry’s Warehouses in Coventry and Hinckley at the following times:
- The Halo Centre, Progress Way, Coventry, CV3 2NT – accepting donations Mondays to Fridays from 12pm to 4pm
- Feed The Hungry, Nutts Lane, Hinckley, LE10 3EJ – accepting donations Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays from 9:30am to 12:30pm
Local businesses, including Amtico, from Coventry, are also pledging their support by holding food packing events at the Coventry warehouse.
Further information about aid items required and how to donate (aid or cash) can be found here
Gwyn and his team are set to travel to Turkey in the next couple of weeks to further assess the level of response required.
He said: “We’re not in a rush to go in at the moment because it will just interfere with the rescue efforts. What we can offer is a secondary response later on so we’re working hard now to ensure we’re ready with as much aid and support as we can offer. Please donate where you can.”
More about Feed The Hungry
- Feed The Hungry is an international Christian humanitarian organisation committed to fighting hunger due to poverty, war, famine and natural disasters. The charity works to reduce world hunger by establishing feeding programs following disaster relief operations in 21 different countries worldwide. With its partner organisations, since 1987.
- Feed The Hungry have globally assisted in feeding over 420,000 children every day in 25 countries. Feed The Hungry also provides disaster relief recovery programs through its network of community programs around the globe.
- Partners include: It Works Netherland, Red Wings UAE and UK, Rise Against Hunger, Rotary UK and Ireland and various local businesses, churches and individuals.
- N. agencies have observed a dramatic increase in global hunger, which was already on the rise, as conflict has complicated the delivery of critical food exports.