Calls for more support for earthquake survivors

Perth’s Turkish community has called for continued support as they try to help family and friends left devastated by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake last month that struck large parts of Turkey and Syria.

Women of World Stage president Filiz Shah says she is grateful for the support shown by the Turkish community and wider Perth groups, but says support is still needed for the thousands left with nothing as people try to rebuild their lives.

“With Turkish and non-Turkish people from all around Perth we collected three shipping containers and six pallets to be sent over there,” says Ms Shah.

Community groups, mosques and other organisations have helped raise funds for Turkish families.
Photo: Filiz Shah.

“It is going to take a long time for the country to be cleaned up, people are living in tents on the street.

“There is nothing left in some cities, there’s not even toilets that people can go to.”

Survivors of the earthquake still need donations as they are dealing with harsh winter conditions combined with having to search through the rubble and wreckage. Appropriate winter clothing, shoes, tents, baby formula and sleeping bags are among some of the items still desperately needed by survivors.

Mosman Park kebab shop owner Emrullah Cokgezici is raising whatever money he can to send over to family, friends and the community in Pazarcik, one of the cities left devastated.

“If I was going to get some clothes and blankets it will take at least two months to arrive there, so I thought I would get some money to send to my cousins there and then they can organise it and help everyone there,” says Mr Cokgezici.

Nazar Kebabs’ owner Emrullah Cokgezici. Photo: Fred Knickel.

Mr Cokgezici has lived in Mosman Park for 12 years and says the community has been very nice in helping him to raise money.

“If it is $5 or $200 I don’t mind, whatever people can use because you are helping me, help people over there,” he says.

Mr Cokgezici is grateful for community support. Photo: Fred Knickel.

The death toll from the earthquake in Turkey currently stands at 45,968 and the count continues to rise.

Tens of thousands remain without shelter or essential goods in the weeks following the initial disaster.

People can support the fundraising effort by contacting Ms Shah on 0417 684 257 or can visit Mr Cokgezici at Nazar Kebabs in Mosman Park.

Filiz Shah has requested the following organisations and individuals be acknowledged for their generous support with fundraising: Sahil Shah, Women of World Stage, its committee and community; Perth’s Turkish community; Metin Sevdim and Funda Sevdim; Canning Suleymaniye Mosque; Turkish Islamic Association; music group Voices of World Ensemble; City of Canning and Mayor Patrick Hall.

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