Singapore Red Cross to send additional $1 million for earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria
The Singapore Red Cross will contribute an additional $1 million to victims of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria, on top of the US$100,000 (S$132,776) it had originally pledged.
It said on Tuesday that Turkey and Syria will each receive $400,000 with the remaining $200,000 given to support the humanitarian activities of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which is working with the humanitarian organisation Syrian Arab Red Crescent to help the affected communities including providing emergency relief and livelihood support among others.
In Turkey, the money will be disbursed to the Turkish Red Crescent Society and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), with it being used to meet the immediate and early recovery needs of victims.
These include purchasing and distributing food and water, as well as tents, blankets and other items to house those who have been displaced by the earthquake.
The money will also be used to support mental and physical health services for vulnerable groups.
Meanwhile in Syria, the money will support IFRC and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent.
Besides providing victims with necessities and shelter, it has also set aside $100,000 for freight and logistical costs for the possible shipment of relief supplies, such as medicines to Turkey and Syria.
The Singapore Red Cross revealed that it had raised over $3 million from Feb 8-13 through its fundraising appeal, with individuals, companies and schools contributing to the pool.
Singapore Red Cross secretary-general and chief executive Benjamin William said it was heartening to see the outpouring of care and concern by people in Singapore.
“We will continue to work closely with the IFRC, ICRC, and the two National Societies to ensure that the funds raised are distributed effectively and transparently, to provide the most appropriate and timely assistance on the ground,” he said.
“We hope for continued support of our fundraising efforts, to sustain our humanitarian aid to the survivors of this devastating disaster.”
Its fundraising appeal will run until May 31, and members of the public can donate online at redcross.sg/donate-turkey-syria
Separately, the Turkish Embassy in Singapore has asked donors to contribute money instead of in-kind donations in a Facebook post on Monday, citing the gradually changing needs of those in the areas struck by the earthquake.
Donations-in-kind have already been suspended, it said, but it cautioned that donors should verify the authenticity of the organisations they were donating to.
This comes after security experts warned about an influx of online scams surrounding this disaster.
These include fake disaster relief accounts as well as scammers asking for cryptocurrency donations.
Often times, these calls for donations are paired with images allegedly showing scenes of the earthquake, with one even showing a firefighter cradling a child pulled from the rubble.
Greek newspaper OEMA reported that the firefighter image was a digital one created by the artificial intelligence image generator Midjourney.