Leading charity Turkish Red Crescent is at the forefront of recovery efforts in Elazığ where a devastating earthquake on Jan. 24 left 41 dead in the eastern province
Red Crescent, in coordination with the Interior Minister and Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) delivers accommodation and food services to earthquake victims.
The charity's staff serves meals in mobile kitchens in parts of Elazığ affected by the earthquake while mobile teams serve tea and soup to locals spending the night outside due to aftershocks amid freezing temperatures. For those left homeless or unable to go back inside their damaged houses, it delivers tents, blankets, beds and heaters.
The Red Crescent mobilized 287 staff members specialized in disaster response, 28 crews providing "psychological and social support" and 2,000 volunteers.
The charity said they sent 2,500 tents, four mobile kitchens, 7,833 beds, 26,576 blankets, 5,740 heaters and 21,352 pieces of clothes to the disaster zone, along with 114,541 food packages. It also set up a playground for children affected by the earthquake while 1,345 units of blood were dispatched to the region to address the needs of hospitals.
Turkish Red Crescent President Kerem Kınık said they tried to provide aid in all affected locations in the area, including remote villages. "We pinpointed the needs of people and fulfilled them. We work with the relevant state agencies and nongovernmental organizations (NGO)," he said.
A rapid response by the state along with an abundance of aid and assistance from across Turkey as well as abroad sped up recovery efforts in Elazığ and Malatya following the earthquake.
People from across the country mobilized within hours to send whatever they could to survivors. All public agencies and NGOs mobilized almost within an hour to save the victims and deliver aid to survivors who had to spend the aftermath outside in below-zero temperatures. From soldiers to volunteers to charities, many rushed to Elazığ and Malatya to join the relief efforts. Truckloads of aid were dispatched to the region carrying the contribution of business associations and municipalities which organized campaigns to help survivors.