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Türkiye-Syria Earthquake: 3 Months On 

Turkiye: The Oguz family from Gaziantep don’t know if they have a house to return to. They have lost everything. Photo: Tineke D'haese/Oxfam

It’s been just 3 months since the devastating earthquake that affected over 18 million people across Türkiye and Syria. The first in the early hours of the morning had a magnitude of 7.8, and was one of the strongest to hit the region in nearly 100 years. In the following days, the region experienced thousands of aftershocks.

In Türkiye, the earthquake left nearly two million people homeless, some too scared to return home for fear it will collapse. Emergency shelters are overcrowded, and many thousands of people are living in tents, which are often set up beside their damaged houses.

As part of our emergency response, Oxfam has been on the ground working alongside and in partnership with local organisations and communities.

We’re working to reach 2 million people with life-saving supplies 

Oxfam, together with our partners in Türkiye and Syria, is working to reach nearly 2 million people – 10 percent of the population affected by the quake – with aid and support so that they can rebuild their lives. 

Thanks supporters like you, Oxfam KEDV has already reached over 24,000 people in Türkiye. Working alongside local organisations and partners, our teams have supported the provision of food, toilets, showers and hygiene kits to affected communities. 

In Syria, we have already started trucking safe drinking water to 38,731 people who left their houses and went to collective shelters and distributing 3,728 hygiene kits, latrine cleaning kits in shelters to 16,919 people.

As part of our 3-year response, Oxfam is working to ensure people impacted by the earthquake can access food, clean water, toilets and showers; rebuild their livelihoods; and are kept safe with their rights protected. 

Thanks to our supporters for being part of this response.

Oxfam is working with local partners to provide:

Turkiye: Members from the Matiya Women's Cooperative and Oxfam KEDV's Neighbourhood Leadership program pack the prepared meals. Photo: Yalcin Ciftci/Oxfam KEDV

750 meals a day in Gaziantep, Hatay & Sanliurfa

Our supporters have helped support the establishment of community kitchens, run by local women cooperatives. Community kitchens were established in cities including Gaziantep and are staffed by women, who were all affected by the earthquake themselves. 

Oxfam KEDV Hygiene kits in Samandag, Hatay province. Photo: Mustafa KaraAli/OXFAM

2,200 hygiene kits in Hatay

These kits include sanitary pads, soap, towels, tooth paste, hair brushes and laundry detergent. These kits are essential for families who have lost their homes, to maintain their dignity and keep themselves healthy.  

Turkiye: Delivery of sanitation facilities in Dulkadiroglu/Kahramanmaras. Photo: Mustafa KaraAli/OXFAM

140 toilets in Kahramanmaras

Along with 59 showers and 16 tap stands, designed by our engineers after consultations with affected communities in Kahramanmaras. This will not only reduce the risk of disease, but also reduces safety risks for women and children who may otherwise have to walk some distance to find facilities.

A community-led response 

Özge Sağaltici works for Oxfam KEDV and is part of the emergency response team. She lost five family members in the earthquake, and her family home was destroyed. Photo: Mustafa Karali/Oxfam

When two powerful earthquakes devastated large parts of southern Türkiye and northern Syria in February, people in the affected communities were the first responders. 

Among them is Özge Sağaltici, 31, who was at home in Gaziantep, where she works for Oxfam KEDV. She and her sister were okay, but she was gravely concerned for her parents who live in the province of Hatay, about a three-hour drive away. 

Thankfully, Özge found her mother and father were safe. But five other members of her family were sadly killed. Özge decided to stay in Hatay to support Oxfam KEDV’s emergency response. 

For now, I will stay here because this is where I belong. I grew up here – the people here deserve support and I feel like I’m needed. I’m one of them, so I can understand their feelings and their situation.

Özge Sağaltici

Özge is playing a critical role in the response, coordinating with women’s cooperatives to help them get the support they need, and working alongside colleagues to distribute items like hygiene kits, which help prevent disease outbreaks and offer people a sense of dignity.  

She is also helping to train other members of the community as community mobilisers to support humanitarian response activities. 

We must not forget the people of Türkiye and Syria

Right now, people are in urgent need of shelter, water, food, showers and toilets, and psychological support. Lack of clean water could also pose health risks and lead to the outbreak of diseases. 

It will take years for the affected communities to fully recover from the earthquake, the loss of their homes and businesses. If you’d like to help the recovery effort you can do so here: