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Deadly Earthquakes in Turkey and Syria

By: Nikki Frankel

Several catastrophic earthquakes began to hit Turkey and Syria early on February 6. With a staggering magnitude of 7.8, the first earthquake was among the biggest to strike the area in the past 100 years, and the second one was not far behind at 7.5. Millions of people are now suffering from terrible weather conditions and inadequate shelter, food, and water as a result of these terrifying earthquakes. The village of Pazarcik in Turkey’s southeast Kahramanmaras province was the epicenter of the early-morning earthquake, which was followed by a number of strong aftershocks. On both sides of the border, thousands of buildings were destroyed, and as rescuers dug through the enormous mounds of rubble for survivors, the death toll was predicted to grow.  The region had some of the greatest earthquakes, and the aftershocks were just as strong. With individuals stranded outside in the severe cold, buildings and homes are unsafe. According to the United Nations, Syria has opened two additional border crossings from Turkey for the upcoming three months to assist with the influx of humanitarian aid. At least 37,357 people have died as a result of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria. A USAID Disaster Assistance and Response Team is currently present in Turkey. In addition, two of our best-trained urban search and rescue teams are assisting Turkish rescue efforts in Adana, one of the hardest-hit regions of the nation. These teams each include close to 200 members, as well as specialized tools and canine support dogs. In an effort to avoid the severe damage to roads and bridges, the US has been able to extend their operating reach with the backing of U.S. military Blackhawk helicopters. Two relief convoys from the United Nations and its allies entered northwest Syria successfully. Totaling now 20 trucks of crucial medicines, food, and water to people in need over the last two days, totaling 14 more truckloads of goods brought through the Bab-al-Hawa Crossing on the Turkey-Syria border. Within the High School East school building there are many clubs accepting donations including math honor society and many of the language honor societies. They are asking for: 


New or lightly used

– overcoat-coat, raincoat, boots, sweaters, trousers, gloves, scarfs, beanies, socks (new), underwear (new)


– baby formula, diapers, hygiene products, feminine hygiene products,


New or lightly used: blankets, sleeping bags (small compact ones are easy to find), flashlight, powerbank (if used, please include the charging cable)

Any donations would be greatly appreciated and would help people in Turkey and Syria recover from these catastrophes!!