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Syria & Türkiye Earthquake

It’s been a year since devastation hit Syria and Türkiye (Turkey), and over 11 million children are still in need. 

On 6 February 2023, two devastating earthquakes and numerous aftershocks hit south-east Türkiye and Syria, killing more than 50,000 people and injuring tens of thousands more. Millions of people were displaced as homes, livelihoods and essential services, including access to safe water, health care and education, were reduced to rubble. 

"Although the earthquakes may have faded from the headlines, it will take years to rebuild the damaged infrastructure and facilities, while the psychological impacts on children could continue beyond that. "

Peta Barns
UNICEF emergency specialist from the ground in Türkiye.

One year on, families continue to be pushed to the brink. In Syria, children are enduring ongoing conflict and displacement, the impact of unprecedented economic crisis, and disease outbreaks. For children in Türkiye, access to water and sanitation is limited in some areas, while more than 450,000 children remain without access to school. 

Every year, UNICEF responds to hundreds of emergencies, delivering lifesaving care, safeguarding children’s rights and protecting them from harm. But we can't do it alone. Please help UNICEF be there for every child, before, during and after an emergency – no matter what. 

Syria & Türkiye Earthquake

UNICEF teams are on the ground, providing urgent assistance to children and families impacted by the devastating earthquake and 12 years of war.

When all seems lost, Hasan finds a way. 

A young boy recovering from injuries after being found beneath the rubble after an earthquake.© UNICEF/UNI494505/Janji

The building that 15-year-old Hasan was sleeping in collapsed when the earthquake struck Syria in February 2023, trapping him beneath the rubble. Hasan called for help, not realising that his mum and sisters had already passed away.  

“I did not see anything, but I heard voices and called for help through a small hole,” explains Hasan. 

Mohamad, Hasan’s uncle, rescued him from underneath the rubble. Badly injured in the arm and leg, and his teeth broken, Hasan now lives with his uncle as he undergoes multiple surgeries while continuing his studies from home. 

In 2022, Hasan was registered for UNICEF's Cash Transfer for Basic Needs program. The program includes unconditional cash transfers and referral services to vulnerable families, helping them meet essential needs. Hasan's family used a large part of the assistance to pay for his education. 

After the earthquakes, Hasan was eligible for a top-up payment through the same program. Hasan now receives UNICEF’s earthquake top-up, which the family used to cover the cost of Hasan's surgeries. 

“My mother’s last wish was for me to pass Grade 9. I made her wish come true,” explains Hasan about his motivation to continue learning. He dreams of becoming a doctor in the future. 

Syria & Türkiye Earthquake

UNICEF staff are in the field, providing urgent assistance to children and families facing the devastating earthquake.

How will my donation help children rebuild their lives after an emergency? 

UNICEF has been in Syria for over 50 years and in Türkiye for over 70 years. We are there for children before, during, and after emergencies, ready to deliver urgent help where it is needed most.

  • $287 could help provide 25 winter blankets for children enduring harsh winters.  
  • $572 could provide an emergency cash transfer for families, helping them buy urgent, lifesaving supplies.  
  • $933 could deliver three School-in-a-Box kits with enough education supplies to keep 120 students learning. 

    How do we use each dollar donated?

  • 82¢
    last year, 82 cents of every dollar donated went to our emergency response work in the field and helped us to be there for children before, during and after emergencies around the world.
  • 18¢
    last year, 18 cents in every dollar were invested in raising public awareness; fundraising to grow our impact for children and in essential accountability and administration work.

UNICEF's regular resources (RR) is funding without restrictions, to be used flexibly for children wherever and whenever the need is greatest.  

With RR, UNICEF can pioneer new ideas for children, work from birth through adolescence, scale up proven solutions globally, prepare and respond in emergencies and contribute to rebuilding efforts, and, most importantly, given our substantial presence across 190 countries around the world, achieve the greatest impact for children.  

Looking for other ways to support children in emergencies?

 A little girl impacted by the series of earthquakes that hit Syria & Türkiye.
© UNICEF/UNI466732/Al Daher

Syria & Türkiye Earthquake

UNICEF teams are on the ground, providing urgent assistance to children and families impacted by the devastating earthquake and 12 years of war.