Prominent Turkish CEO and one of the biggest online mega-retailers, Amazon, has been the biggest support towards the victims of the earthquake in Turkey and Syria by delivering numerous aid supplies.
Following the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that struck Turkey on Feb. 6, more than 21,000 people were killed, and tens of thousands were injured. The earthquake was dubbed the “disaster of the century” by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to the Associated Press.
Around 13.5 million people live in the quake-ravaged area, including some in Syria, where residents are already dealing with a civil war.
International aid organizations like Direct Relief and Médecins Sans Frontières have dispatched personnel to the region, and many businesses have begun contributing money and resources to alleviate the situation.
Amazon provides Support
On Thursday, Amazon AMZN, -1.81% announced that it will donate $500,000 in cash to organizations such as: the World Food Program, Save the Children, UNICEF, Red Crescent, AKUT Search and Rescue Association, and the AHBAP Foundation.
Amazon is also donating products and providing “logistics support” in the area, according to the company. On February 7, the company sent two truckloads of donated relief items from an Amazon fulfillment center in Istanbul to Hatay Province. In September 2022, Amazon had opened its first fulfillment center in Turkey, in Istanbul.
Amazon customers can help by donating through a new donations page on Amazon’s Türkiye store,” the company wrote in a blog post. “Within three hours of the page going live on Tuesday, customers had donated more than 5,000 items to help earthquake victims.”
Amazon has utilized its logistics expertise in previous disasters. In June 2021, a disaster relief hub had been open in the United States to pre-position supplies that are frequently required by humanitarian relief organizations in order to response to disasters. After Hurricane Fiona hit Puerto Rico, the company activated the Atlanta hub to send medical supplies to hospitals in Ukraine following Russia’s invasion.
Chobani CEO Ulukaya pledged $1 million to the Turkish Philanthropy Funds
Hamdi Ulukaya, the CEO and founder of yogurt brand Chobani, will also support aid organizations in Turkey and Syria. Ulukaya, a Turkish native, has pledged to donate $1 million to the Turkish Philanthropy Funds and has stated that he will match up to $1 million in additional donations to help those affected by the disaster. “Our brothers & sisters in #turkey and region desperately need our help,” Ulukaya tweeted.
Ikea provides donation to Médecins Sans Frontières
IKEA’s charitable arm is also sending aid in the form of a ten million Euro donation to Médecins Sans Frontières (equivalent to approximately $10.7 million). “Our hearts and thoughts go out to all those who are affected,” said Per Heggenes, CEO of the IKEA Foundation. “I call on the world’s governments, businesses, and philanthropies to join us in the relief support for Türkiye and northern Syria.”
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