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Severe earthquake in Syria and Türkiye: Donate now!

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An earthquake of magnitude 7.8 and several aftershocks shook the Syrian-Turkish border region at around 4 a.m. local time on 06 February 2023. The effects of the disaster are dramatic. Tens of thousands of people lost their lives. So far, more than 40,000 deaths have been officially reported (as of 15 February 2023). The full extent of the quake remains uncertain. It is assumed that the actual number of dead could be much higher. The damage to buildings, roads and infrastructure is equally enormous, the conditions on the ground catastrophic. Many people are sleeping outside, in cars or in emergency shelters in freezing temperatures. Water and electricity supplies are not guaranteed. The need for humanitarian aid is huge in both Türkiye and Syria: food, blankets, tents, heaters, generators, clean water as well as medical and psychosocial care are urgently needed.

With your donation you support our emergency aid for the people affected by the earthquake. Donate now!

This is how we provide aid in the earthquake regions:

Immediately after the disaster, we sent an emergency relief team to the earthquake region for rapid coordination of aid and, together with our partner organisations, we are standing by the affected people in Türkiye and Syria:

  • We are supporting local organisations in Türkiye and our partner organisations in north-west Syria in the procurement of relief supplies such as tents, generators, blankets, mattresses and food.
  • In northwest Syria, we are currently supporting six hospitals, a maternity clinic with a children's hospital, and eight primary health care units in the regions of Idlib and in northern Aleppo.
  • We are bringing trucks with relief supplies on their way to the earthquake region.

All support is still needed. Our teams and partner organisations are doing their best to help the people on the ground. Donate now!


Earthquake in Syria - our emergency response


12 Years of War – Syria’s children of war talk about their childhood

On the day of Ahmed’s birth, everything came down at once for the family of the twelve-year-old Ahmed: joy and grief, life and death, beginning and end.

That morning, Ahmed’s father and two uncles were walking down the road that leads to the orchard, which was their source of livelihood, when a sudden shelling ended their lives. The war in Syria began in March 2011 and continues to claim countless lives ever since. For children who grow up in a world without peace, the impacts of the last twelve years are especially severe.  

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"The walls begann to fall" - three earthquake survivors from Syria tell their stories

Even weeks after the 7.7 magnitude earthquake struck the border region of Türkiye and Syria, millions of people continue to live in a constant state of terror. The thousands of aftershocks that have followed since the event serve as a painful reminder of the harrowing night that claimed the lives of their loved ones. Earthquake survivors Ali, Amal and Muhammad from northwest Syria share their experience.  

Earthquake survivors from Syria report

Operations in complete darkness, without electricity, in extremely cold weather

As the ground began to shake in the early morning hours of February 6 in Türkiye and Syria, the doctors of Malteser International-supported hospitals in northwest Syria prepared for the worst.  “Our medical staff rushed to the hospital, where they encountered the harrowing horrors of this catastrophe. There was a seemingly endless line of civilian cars and ambulances transporting a vast number of dead and injured”, reports Dr. Moheeb Kaddour, medical director at Atmeh Charitable Hospital, which is run by “Hand in Hand for Aid in Development” (HIHFAD), a Syrian partner organization of Malteser International.

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Earthquake: Arrival of First Relief Supplies From Germany Expected Today

Cologne/Gaziantep. Humanitarian aid for the people affected by the earthquake in Türkiye and Syria continues at full speed. Today, the first trucks that were dispatched from Germany on Thursday are expected to arrive in Türkiye. A total of 10 tons of relief supplies including beds, blankets, tents and mattresses, will be handed over to the Turkish Red Crescent for distribution upon arrival. “The international support is immense, and we are very grateful for that. Logistics remain a major challenge. Our colleagues in Türkiye and Malteser International headquarters in Cologne are working nonstop to procure further relief supplies, and to bring those over to Türkiye” says Dr. Thomas Weiss, Head of Malteser International’s Middle East Department.

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Malteser International: Aid Distribution in Syria Underway – Need for Water Supply in Sanitation Facilities

Cologne/Gaziantep. One week after the devastating earthquake in Türkiye and Syria, aid organization and local units continue to work around-the-clock to provide medical and relief supply to the millions of people affected. Through local partner organizations in Syria, the distribution of tents, beds, blankets and food to people in need is already in progress. While the first international rescue teams are starting to make their way home, humanitarian aid for the survivors - and oftentimes traumatized people - continues at high speed. 

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Malteser International: Border to Syria is Open - Aid is on its Way

Cologne/Gaziantep. While international aid workers have arrived in Türkiye and are helping with rescue activities and the distribution of relief supplies, the situation in Syria remains highly precarious. "We are trying to provide for the people who survived and are now enduring in the cold. We haven't had electricity since Monday, it's only slowly coming back, everything is somehow scarce - it's extremely difficult," reports Hassan Alam, who works for Malteser International's Syrian partner organization Hand in Hand for Aid and Development in northwestern Syria.

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Malteser International: One Hundred Operations Carried Out Since the Earthquake in Syria

Cologne/Gaziantep. Malteser International is currently supporting six hospitals, a maternity and children hospital as well as eight primary health care units in the regions of Idlib and North Aleppo in northwestern Syria. The aid projects in the Syrian border region are managed from Türkiye. Oliver Hochedez, Head of Emergency Relief of Malteser International, is in constant exchange with the partners in northwestern Syria who care for the people affected by the earthquake.

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German Federal Foreign Office provides Malteser International with One Million Euro for Emergency Aid in Syria

Cologne/Gaziantep. Malteser International expands its emergency aid for the people affected by the earthquake in Syria and Türkiye. For this purpose, the German Federal Foreign Office has provided one million euro for Malteser International's emergency relief in Syria. The money will be used to procure urgently needed relief supplies such as blankets, mattresses, tents and food. The need is huge: according to the World Health Organization (WHO), around 23 million people in Syria and Türkiye have been affected by the consequences of the quakes. In the two countries, a combined total of more than 10,000 houses have been destroyed.

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Earthquake in Türkiye and Syria: Malteser International provides 400,000 Euro emergency aid

Cologne/Gaziantep. After the severe earthquake in Türkiye and Syria early Monday morning, Malteser International provides 400,000 Euro emergency aid for the people in the affected areas. It is estimated that more than 4,000 people have died in the quake so far. Hundreds of buildings were completely destroyed and the infrastructure was massively damaged. Aid workers continue to search for survivors under the rubble and care for the injured. The international community supports the local units. Malteser International (MI) has also sent an emergency relief team to the affected region.

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Earthquake in Türkiye and Syria: Malteser International sends emergency relief team

Cologne/Gaziantep. After the severe earthquake in Türkiye and Syria early Monday morning, the Turkish government has asked the international community for help. The quake had a magnitude of 7.8 on the Richter scale. According to reports so far, more than 600 people were killed in both countries. However, the numbers are rising rapidly and the damage to residential buildings and infrastructure is massive. Malteser International (MI) has sent an emergency relief team to the affected region.

Read more
+++ Earthquake in Syria and Türkiye: Your help is needed +++
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Our humanitarian aid in Syria

The vicious conflict in Syria has now been raging for more than 11 years. Since March 2011, the country has been a theatre of war and the suffering does not seem to be abating. Over 600,000 people have lost their lives in the conflict, and an entire generation of children has never known a life of peace. Some 6.9 million people have been displaced internally and about three-quarters of the 6.8 million people who fled abroad live as refugees in neighboring countries. The Syrian war is one of the worst humanitarian crises of our time.

14 million people in Syria are now dependent on humanitarian aid. We have been on the ground through our partners since 2012, providing vital emergency aid.

The people in Syria are urgently dependent on your support!

Our ways of support:

Since the beginning of the Syrian conflict, we have been providing life-saving emergency aid to Syrians in need, especially in the form of medical care. Along with partner organizations on the ground, we operate and support hospitals, primary healthcare centers and mobile medical units. In addition to distributing relief supplies such as blankets, mattresses and hygiene articles, we are ensuring adequate water supply, sanitation and hygiene inside the camps. We also provide psychosocial support.

Years of war, protracted hostilities and multiple displacements have worsened the humanitarian situation and the plight of the people in Syria. Many families have been left without much hope for the future. The trauma is overwhelming. Syria remains one of the largest and most complex crises in the world.

Public health system in the country has collapsed. A huge number of hospitals and medical facilities have been destroyed in the war, energy supplies are inadequate, and there is a shortage of medicines, supplies, and medical personnel.

Many of the displaced people in the Idlib region live in camps and informal settlements. People lack basic supplies such as tents, mattresses, blankets, clean water, food, and medical care.

  • Improved access to primary and secondary healthcare
  • Improved healthcare for children and mothers
  • Rehabilitation of medical facilities and infrastructure
  • Improved access to clean water supply, sanitation and hygiene in camps for displaced people

Working closely with our partners Hand in Hand for Aid and Development and Independent Doctors Association, we are committed to improving health care by operating and supporting several hospitals, primary health centers and mobile medical units. Our activities include:

  • Outpatient services at primary health centers and hospitals, including general medical check-ups, treatment of malnutrition in children, and vaccination
  • Operation and support for specialist hospitals to perform diagnosis procedures and specialist treatments such as emergency medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, surgery, orthopedics, ear, nose and throat, ophthalmology, neurology and urology
  • Support for emergency rooms and surgical health services
  • Primary and secondary pediatric and maternal health services, as well as obstetrics, emergency obstetrics and neonatal care
  • Operation of an intensive care, thalassemia and dialysis units
  • Ambulance services
  • Provision of medicines and medical supplies
  • Distributing medicines and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits to health facilities
  • Psychosocial counseling
  • Health education and early detection of diseases and malnutrition
  • Capacity strenghtening for healthcare by implementing health data management systems and improvements in stock management
  • Covid-19 prevention: Measures in health facilities and triage areas, public awareness on Covid-19 and protective measures.

Inside camps and informal settlements, we are working to provide clean water, distribute hygiene kits to families in need, and ensure adequate waste management. We are also constructing laterines and ensuring that sanitary facilities in good conditions.

Funding institutions: German Federal Foreign Office, Aktion Deutschland Hilft, Nachbar in Not (via Malteser Austria), Seliger Gerhard Stiftung



Malteser International's Syria assistance in pictures

Latest news from Syria:

Stories from Syria:

Syria experiences the worst famine in recent history

War, drought and rising prices are the triggers of the hunger crisis in Syria. 

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Yusuf's story

For many Syrian children living with chronic diseases, the war means also coping with the challenge of their unmanaged health problems.

Read Yusuf's story


"A few days after we fled, I learned that our house had been destroyed during the bombing. They sent me a video of it. When I saw it, I felt so bad," says Iman Al-Mahmoud.

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Face of our work: Batoul

Batoul is a refugee working with Malteser International and helping other refugees from her country deal with their traumatic experiences.

Read her story
Our work in Syria

Project regions: Aleppo and Idlib
Partners: Independent Doctors Association, Hand in Hand for Aid and Development

Support our work for refugees in the Middle East!
Donate now