At the end of the week that a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the Turkish Syrian border, over 33,000 have been announced dead, countless thousands more injured, and multiples more remain sleeping exposed to freezing temperatures.

In Syria, the UNHCR estimates around 5.3 million people will have been left homeless. Northern Syria has been shattered by more than eleven years of conflict and is in the midst of a bitterly cold winter. This disaster puts already struggling communities in a truly desperate situation.

Homes and buildings have collapsed and with the instability caused by war, many more may yet do so. This leaves extremely vulnerable groups of people at risk of frostbite and hypothermia.

A spokesperson for our partner, SAMS (Syrian American Medical Society) said “hospitals are overwhelmed with patients filling the hallways. There is an immediate need for trauma supplies and a comprehensive emergency response to save lives.”

We are working with our partners to respond by providing urgently needed medication and supplies. We’ve already pledged £80,000 raised through our Emergency Earthquake Appeal to help but much more is needed.

Baby Aya was found buried under rubble in Syria.

Earlier this week, in northwest Syria, new-born Aya was found buried under the rubble of a once five-story apartment block. She was the only one of her family to survive.

Dr Hani Maarouf, the physician now treating Aya (Arabic for “a sign from God”), believes she was born in the rubble, only three hours before being found. If she had been born before the earthquake, he explains, she would not have survived so long in the cold.

Aya is just one of many now orphaned babies. With your donations, we are providing our partner, PAC, with the funds for baby milk for 2,300 orphaned babies, and babies whose mothers are currently unable to breastfeed. Supplies will be distributed across north west and north east Syria, as well as Turkey. This nutritional support will be these babies life-support.

You can donate to our Emergency Earthquake Appeal here.