Thousands of people in Syria are reeling from deadly earthquakes that struck on the morning of February 6. The first registered at magnitude 7.8—one of the strongest earthquakes to hit the region in 100 years—and the second at magnitude 7.5. The Armenian Relief Society (ARS) of Eastern USA was one of the first to begin an urgent fundraising campaign to assist the humanitarian relief work of the Armenian Relief Cross of Syria (ARCS) during the ongoing search and rescue efforts.
Within the first couple of hours, the ARS of Eastern USA directly transferred a preliminary amount of $5,000 to help launch assistance efforts and began an online fundraising campaign for Syrian Armenian aid. Thanks to the donations made by its supporters and chapters, the ARS of Eastern USA reports that it has raised $50,000, which will be transferred to the ARCS through the Central Executive Board.
The ARCS has implemented several programs to serve the needs of the community—ensuring that the doors of the clinic (Tarmanadoon) remain open until late in the evening to meet urgent health needs and mobilizing the “Petag” kitchen to prepare meals for search and rescue teams and community members. Over 2,000 meals were provided from February 7 to 9.
Additionally, in response to a call to action, the ARCS provided 400 milk containers for babies, as well as tea and sugar. On February 8, the 1,900 Armenians who took refuge in the Armenian centers were provided an assortment of cakes and sweets and milk for young children (350 in total). The following day, the communities of Nor Kyugh and Villas received an assortment of jams, compliments of the ARCS “Shirak” Store.
The ARCS also prepared and distributed 3,000 boxes of to-go meals to those in the Armenian centers. On February 9, ARCS doctors and nurses from the clinic began rotations at the Armenian centers to provide care for those taking refuge there. Work is also underway to prepare and distribute blankets to children and adults.
As rescue teams continue to search the rubble of the many buildings that have been destroyed, the death toll is still rising. Therefore, the ARS of Eastern USA is once again asking you to please support its activities and help those affected by this catastrophe.