The Church of Ireland Bishops’ Appeal for World Aid and Development has launched a call for donations to help the people of Turkey and Syria following the earthquake on Monday (6th February) which has resulted in over 21,000 deaths.
Bishops’ Appeal has immediately released €10,000 from its reserves to Christian Aid for its work in the area, and is encouraging parishes to contribute to this appeal in support of Christian Aid over the coming Sundays. All details about how to give are provided below.
In a joint endorsement of the appeal, Archbishops John McDowell and Michael Jackson said: “The disastrous earthquake which has so suddenly overtaken and overwhelmed the people and resources of Turkey, and stretched beyond breaking point the already ravaged infrastructure of Syria, requires a swift response from aid agencies in the Western world. The Bishops’ Appeal of the Church of Ireland is to be commended for releasing €10,000 from its reserves immediately to be channelled through Christian Aid, a trusted partner, to the areas affected.
“Of course, much more is needed and we would encourage parishes to make a special appeal sometime over the next few weeks to supplement this initial contribution by Bishops’ Appeal. Equally we would encourage prayer that the God of all comfort would be very near to all who are suffering through injury, bereavement and anxiety, and for all relief workers.”
Christian Aid has a track record of working together with local partners in north-west Syria since 2012. The agency and its partners are already providing winter kits to people seeking shelter in the region, where over four million people are in need of aid due to the civil war. They will scale this work up to meet the immediate humanitarian needs of those affected by the earthquake.
What is needed?
The main needs according to its partner field teams are:
- Winter kits including blankets, mattresses, food parcels and heating material – partners had already procured 40,000 of these kits prior to the earthquake and have started distributing these immediately within collective shelters;
- Preparing shelters to help people find some safety indoors from the weather; and
- Working with other local organisations to remove debris and continue rescue efforts.
It is also expected that donations will be used to provide basic food, water and sanitation, shelter and healthcare, education and mental health support, particularly for children and young people.
Dean Niall Sloane, speaking on behalf of the Bishops’ Appeal Advisory Committee, added: “For over five decades, the Bishops’ Appeal has responded to crisis across the globe. This week we are quickly becoming aware of the extent of the tragic events in Turkey and Syria. All funds collected will be distributed to our dedicated mission partners who are actively working in the affected areas. We would also encourage parishes to pray for all those affected by these events and for all aid workers who are engaged in the relief operation.”
How can we help?
Donations can be made, in euro or in sterling, in the following ways:
- An online donation at www.bishopsappeal.ireland.anglican.org/give
- A direct lodgement into the Bishops’ Appeal bank account (details of which are provided on the Bishops’ Appeal website at the link provided above);
- Sending a cheque, payable to Church of Ireland Bishops’ Appeal, to: Church of Ireland Bishops’ Appeal, Church of Ireland House, Church Avenue, Rathmines, Dublin 6, D06 CF67;
- Making a donation through a Church of Ireland parish or diocesan office.
Taxpayers can give more help by gift aiding donations (if resident in the UK) or tax relief on donations (in the Republic of Ireland). The appropriate forms and further details about how to give are also available at www.bishopsappeal.ireland.anglican.org/give