By Alisha Ahmed
An earthquake struck Turkey, northern Syria, and portions of Lebanon on February 6, 2023. The first earthquake occurred at 4 a.m., in Turkey's Gaziantep province, 14.2 miles east of Nurdagi,. A 6.7-magnitude aftershock occurred eleven minutes later. The aftershock was followed by a 7.5-degree earthquake, which struck at 1:24 PM. according to the USGS. The magnitude of this earthquake was the highest Turkey had seen in the previous century and the high magnitude was what caused the earthquake to be felt in places as far as Lebanon. There have been more than 7,000 fatalities and numerous injuries. Thousands of people have lost family members and loved ones, and many more remain trapped beneath the debris of homes and buildings.
Both Syria and Lebanon have endured decade-long humanitarian crises and conflicts, and now they must contend with yet another heartbreaking incident. Over 5,700 buildings have collapsed in Turkey, and rescuers are rushing to attempt to save any survivors. This distressing incident has affected everyone.
Mila Hossain, a junior stated, “The earthquake has affected me because hearing about these occurrences makes me scared and feel sad for the ones who were involved and affected. I know if I was going through what the people of Turkey and Syria are going through, I would hope that people bring awareness to the crisis and not forget about what is happening. I think we should do whatever we can to help whether it’s to educate everyone about it or donate funds to those who need assistance. Watching the media is devastating and it is hard to imagine how it would be for the ones experiencing it.”
Natural disasters like this send an awakening to us and allow us to see how fortunate we are in our circumstances.
It is our obligation to raise awareness of individuals in need and how we can provide assistance. There are several ways we can support the earthquake victims, including sharing on social media and spreading the word to our friends.
Online, there are numerous places where you can contribute to help:
- Syrian Forum USA
- Syrian American Medical Society
- UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency