This past summer, I had the opportunity to visit the earthquake region and witness the ongoing recovery firsthand. My trip to Hatay and Iskenderun with my 17-year-old son revealed the enduring pain, even seven months later. The survivors continue to grapple with their new normal.
Large swathes of the cities remain in ruins. Survivors, primarily residing in container cities, experience varied living conditions. Some have decent amenities like hot water and clean bathrooms, while others merely have four walls sheltering families who lack the basic necessities we often take for granted—essentials crucial for dignified living. Every interaction underscored the collective loss, whether of a loved one, a home, or a means to provide for their families.
The realization of the recovery path weighed on me, but amidst the despair, I also witnessed abundant kindness and unity.
I met incredibly inspiring individuals who left their city lives to volunteer with local NGOs. Their unwavering dedication not only infused hope into the devastated community but also highlighted the magnitude of work that remains. We need to continue to provide support for their work. While we’ve provided immediate relief, the journey of rebuilding demands sustained attention. Beyond mere shelter, survivors need sustainable job opportunities, psychological support to cope with trauma, and educational resources to reweave the social fabric of their lives. The region is poised to rise from its challenges, and with our continued collective efforts, I am confident we can help rebuild it into the heart of Anatolia.
TPF is deeply committed to long-term support in the earthquake region. Recognizing the profound impact of sustained assistance, we are ready to extend our support for as long as it’s needed. The collective strength of our community will be essential on this path forward. Will you stand alongside TPF and me in championing the continued rebuilding efforts?
TPF Board Member