Hungarian charities help in Turkey and Syria

Several Hungarian charities have offered aid and launched online donation drives to help survivors and families in earthquake-hit Turkey and Syria.

Rescuers from Hungary’s Baptist Charity have saved a boy in Antakya, Turkey, near the Syrian border. At around 7pm CET, a boy was pulled from the rubble and was administered medical care by the HUBA Rescue24 International Fire and Rescue Team and it's 19-member medical team which is working alongside 7 Hungarian rescue dogs. The team is continuing to search through the rubble of around 2,000 houses in the area, where many people are thought to be trapped.

Meanwhile, several Hungarian charities have also offered aid and launched online donation drives to help survivors and families in earthquake-hit Turkey and Syria. The Hungarian Reformed Church Charity said it is providing emergency shelters and supplies to people in need. The Hungarian Red Cross said it is collecting donations in line with requests received from partner organisations the Turkish Red Crescent and Syrian Arab Red Crescent. The Hungarian Maltese Charity said it is setting up its first mobile clinic in Syria in the city of Latakia, as well as a hotspot providing food, drink, and toiletries to residents of the earthquake-hit area. The charity said in a statement that many Syrians in the area had spent a chilly night in cars for fear of further tremors. It is working together with its local partner, the Greek Catholic Church, to rescue survivors beneath the rubble. According to its statement, Syria has not received as many international rescue teams as Turkey, because the country is under sanctions and entry is difficult. Electricity and fuel supplies were erratic even before the disaster, while some areas are controlled by armed organisations, making travel difficult, it added. The Hungarian Ecumenical Charity said it is sending aid containing food, hygiene supplies and blankets to the Aleppo region while providing accommodation to families in need. The Hungarian Islam Community is collecting winter clothing and cash donations and it will transfer these to its Turkish partner organisation Sadakatesi Dernegi. Tristan Azbej, the foreign ministry’s state secretary in charge of persecuted Christians, said the government is supporting Hungarian rescue teams working in Turkey through its Hungary Helps humanitarian aid program.