One month on from the earthquakes that struck Türkiye killing over 45,000 people and destroying hundreds of thousands of buildings and major infrastructure, aid and donations for survivors has sharply declined in spite of continuing urgent needs.
Hundreds of thousands of families are residing in informal settlements to stay close to homes that have been destroyed, where there is little to no access to water and basic sanitation, shelter, and food. Women and children are affected disproportionately, with many fearing for their safety. Oxfam spoke with one woman who delivered a baby in a tent and had not received any medical support 10 days after giving birth.
In an area with a population of 15.2 million, almost 2 million people have evacuated from earthquake affected areas with government support or through their own means, straining the local economy and available safe housing across the country. Those who remain have no recourse but to stay outside, fearing returning indoors due to continuing aftershocks that continue to damage homes and infrastructure. The areas affected by the earthquakes in Türkiye include a large Syrian refugee population, who have already endured displacement.
Oxfam in Türkiye is coordinating with a network of grassroots women’s organisations and cooperatives, volunteers, civil society actors, and public authorities to rapidly provide food, clean water, showers, hygiene products, and blankets, and to facilitate setting up shelters. With Oxfam, women’s cooperatives are operating community kitchens and providing food to people everyday. Oxfam is also initiating the repair of water reservoirs to ensure access to clean water and setting up of toilets and showers.
In the coming months, Oxfam intends to support 1.4 million people living in the areas most affected by the earthquake by providing access to food, restoring water systems, and supporting people’s livelihoods through training and financial support.