Derived from its Historical Civilization, Türkiye Reaching a Peak in Humanitarian Aid

İhsan Açık
Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Türkiye Diyanet Foundation

The world is grappling with major crises, including world wars, health, migration, climate, disasters, and the economy. Deepening humanitarian crises not only adversely affect millions of people but also give rise to other problems. At this point, Türkiye, in collaboration with public institutions and non-governmental organizations, is taking on the task of alleviating the suffering and hardships in the world, coming to the aid of those in distress, comforting weary hearts, and combating evil with goodness on Earth.

Türkiye, with a strong tradition rooted in its history and ancient culture, sees aiding victims as a humanitarian duty, responsibility, and an essential element in the stability of the world, both domestically and internationally. Actively participating in humanitarian aid activities, Türkiye strives to deliver assistance swiftly to wherever it is needed, regardless of race, religion, language, or gender. Global humanitarian aid reports demonstrate that Türkiye, based on its GNP, is one of the world’s largest humanitarian aid donors, proving that it is sowing seeds of goodness worldwide. 

The Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has been fulfilling its mission in the journey of goodwill for nearly half a century, serving as one of the strongest links in the ancient chain of kindness. With the support of our benevolent nation, the Foundation operates in 149 countries, believing that every seed planted, be it large or small, will change people, societies, and the world. While rapidly continuing its work in various fields, from education to societal activities, from housing to food, from disaster relief to urgent humanitarian aid, and supporting religious life, the Foundation also actively carries out its activities in crisis areas and in geographies where there is need.

In order to respond quickly and accurately to disasters, Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has established search and rescue teams under the umbrella of AFAD in six provinces. It is aimed to establish these search and rescue teams in all 81 provinces in coordination with public institutions.

Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has 1 mobile kitchen truck, 3 mobile catering units, 1 emergency response vehicle, 1 coordination vehicle, and 1 search and rescue vehicle in its inventory for use in case of disasters. The Türkiye Diyanet Foundation also holds the distinction of being the first NGO to receive the ‘Nutrition Accreditation’ certificate from AFAD.

Operating effectively in crisis areas and other regions in need, the Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has connected over 2 million people in 2022, primarily in Türkiye, with over 265 million Turkish lira in zakat funds. Zakat funds are used for educational activities, humanitarian crises, hunger, poverty, and famine, both domestically and abroad. Conditional zakat donations are made for Yemen and Arakan, where the world’s largest humanitarian crisis is unfolding, and are utilized for the benefit of those in need in the region.

Contributing to the alleviation of the deepening humanitarian crisis caused by flooding in Pakistan, the Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has provided the country with 240 tons of food and various humanitarian assistance. The Foundation’s aid activities continued in countries such as Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Syria, Palestine, Africa, Arakan, Yemen, and Indonesia, where humanitarian crises are prevalent.

Within the scope of the ‘One Drop of Life Project,’ the Foundation aims to bring hope to millions of people who do not have access to clean drinking water by opening water wells and foundation fountains that can operate with solar energy, provide agricultural irrigation, and be used by animals, at depths ranging from 50 to 500 meters in drought-probe regions. In 2022, by offering 350 water wells and foundation fountains in 25 countries to the people in region, we enabled 2 million people to access clean drinking water. The Foundation, striving to bring life to arid regions, has provided hope to 8 million people since the project’s inception.

Prioritizing education in its efforts, the Türkiye Diyanet Foundation has provided scholarship support to 36,000 students in the new academic year, including 10,000 domestic and 26,000 international students. The Foundation has been supporting financially disadvantaged students by providing scholarship assistance to over 300,000 students since its establishment.

The Türkiye Diyanet Foundation, since its establishment, has provided clothing and stationery support to more than 2,587,753 individuals. In the 2022-2023 academic year alone, it offered clothing and stationary support to over 10,000 students in 39 provinces. The Foundation, through projects such as ‘Goodness Workshops,’ ‘Winter Feast,’ ‘Starting Life,’ ‘If You Forget, They Become Orphans,’ ‘Bridges to Life Through Art,’ ‘Ramadan’s Remedy: Orphan’s Table,’ ‘Field Work,’ ‘Respect Your Elders, Bless Your Life,’ ‘Warming Our Hearts with Goodness,’ ‘We Are by the Side of Our Animal Friends,’ and ‘Let my Gift be a Book,’ has reached nearly 2 million people.

Under the theme ‘Don’t Forget Your Brother, You are the Expected One,’ the Türkiye Diyanet Foundation, as part of its domestic Ramadan program, reached a total of 1,246,000 people in 922 districts across 81 provinces, and internationally, it delivered humanitarian aid to 895,000 people in 273 regions across 83 countries, thus touching the lives of 2,150,000 people in total.

Under the theme ‘Share Your Sacrifice, Get Closer to Your Brother,’ in its Sacrifice program, the Foundation distributed meat to approximately 22 million people in need in 81 provinces and 922 districts within Türkiye, as well as in 82 countries abroad. Through the ‘My Gift is the Quran’ project, a total of 250,000 copies of the Quran were distributed to those in need, with 89,000 copies distributed domestically and 161,000 internationally. 

The Türkiye Diyanet Foundation, which came to the aid of over 40 million people in 2022, continues to bring hope to the oppressed through its ongoing assistance efforts. Drawing strength from its goal of ‘Let Goodness Reign on Earth,’ the Foundation places importance on every activity aimed at the religious, social, and cultural development of society in our country and around the world, striving to be the key to doors of joy with the assistance provided on this path of goodness, towards achieving societal peace and harmony both domestically and globally. 

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