On 15 Feb 2023, the UK government has announced a new aid package of £25 million to support urgent humanitarian needs in Turkey and Syria following the recent earthquakes in the region. The funding will support the ongoing efforts of aid agencies and the UN on the ground, as well as the recovery effort led by the Turkish government. This article will provide a thematic breakdown of the UK’s aid package and its impact.
Emergency Relief for Families Made Homeless
The UK’s aid package includes additional emergency relief, such as family tents and blankets, for families who have been made homeless in freezing conditions. As the situation on the ground moves from rescue to recovery, the UK is committed to addressing urgent humanitarian needs in the affected areas.
World-Class UK Medical and Technical Expertise
The UK is also providing ongoing deployment of world-class medical and technical expertise through the joint MoD-FCDO Field Hospital established in Turkoglu. The hospital includes an emergency department, 24/7 operating theatre, and accompanying medical staff, providing lifesaving medical care working side-by-side with Turkish medics.
Support for Aid Agencies and UN in Syria
The aid funding will also support the work of the UN and aid agencies on the ground in Syria, helping communities ravaged by war and this national disaster. The funding will help ensure that aid reaches the millions in need, including 4.9 million who need cross-border aid in north-west Syria following the devastating earthquakes.
Particular Focus on Protecting Women and Girls
The aid package has a particular focus on protecting women and girls, including helping with childbirth and midwifery, and reducing the risk of gender-based violence for communities who have been displaced. The funding will help support the most vulnerable members of the affected communities and ensure that they receive the care and protection they need.
Building on the UK’s Early Response
This aid package builds on the UK’s early response to the earthquakes, which included the deployment of a UK International Search and Rescue Team in Turkey, increased support to the White Helmets in north-west Syria, and rapid delivery of life-saving items such as emergency shelter, medical equipment, and blankets. The new funding demonstrates the UK’s ongoing commitment to supporting the affected communities and helping them to rebuild their lives.
The new aid package announced by the UK government will have a significant impact on the ongoing earthquake recovery efforts in Turkey and Syria. The funding will provide critical support for families who have been made homeless, world-class medical and technical expertise, aid agencies and the UN in Syria, and the most vulnerable members of the affected communities. The UK’s commitment to supporting the affected communities demonstrates the power of international aid and cooperation in times of crisis.