The COVID-19 pandemic, which officially entered our agenda with the detection of the first case in Turkey in March, increased the risks faced by those affected by the disaster while affecting everyone’s lives. With our COVID-19 Response Plan, we have renewed ourselves with digital solutions and tools that will enable us to continue all our activities remotely while ensuring that urgent needs are met.

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PROTECTION

Following the pandemic, in order to reach our beneficiaries, we established the Information and Support Line and continued case management, psychosocial and psychological support and legal support services by phone as of April. In order for the beneficiaries to have direct access to the information they need, we designed the online website hayatadestek.online with Turkish-Arabic content. We made available informative videos, audio recordings and written documents under 26 topics.
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LIVELIHOODS

In 2020, we carried out livelihood projects for Syrian and local community members and socioeconomically vulnerable groups. In this context, while providing employability training to approximately 250 young people in Istanbul, we covered the payment of 179 temporary or internationally protected asylum seekers’ work permit fees. We adapted the Turkish language classes, which was interrupted due to the pandemic, to online systems quickly and delivered these courses to approximately 180 people in Istanbul, Hatay and Mardin provinces. We also organized vocational training on local food production with 31 women in Hatay.
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CAPACITY BUILDING

In this process, we provided training and mentoring support to many institutions in many areas including Protection, Child Protection, Child Safeguarding, Core Humanitarian Standards and Basic Project Cycle Management.
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CHILD PROTECTION IN SEASONAL AGRICULTURE

We have provided 3-month conditional cash support to ensure that 1206 children employed or at risk of being employed in seasonal agriculture in Viranşehir district of Şanlıurfa stop working and attend school. During the COVID-19 pandemic, we continued our case management and psychosocial support for the identified at-risk children and their families remotely. We delivered the 2,823 psychosocial support packages provided by the UN International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) to children. In the seminar organized by Bilgi University within the scope of 12 June World Day Against Child Labor, we explained the negative effects of child labor in seasonal agriculture together with our field experiences.
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EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE

Elazığ Earthquake: After the earthquake that occurred in Elazığ on January 24, we carried out humanitarian works together with the Disaster Platform after identifying the needs and the situation. While our expert teams made home visits to determine the needs and the situation, our volunteer teams took part in the distribution of relief materials. We provided 269 temporary animal shelters in collaboration with the Provincial Directorates of Agriculture to 244 families whose barns were damaged in the rural areas of Elazığ and Malatya.

Refugee Mobility at the Turkey-Greece Border: On January 28, in Edirne, Pazarkule, to which 13 thousand refugees moved, we carried out our humanitarian operations in coordination with the actors in the region to respond to urgent needs. In addition to providing 15,360 units of baby food, 20,000 ready canned foods and 15,100 raincoats in the region, we provided transportation support to 161 families who wanted to return from Edirne to the cities where they lived and accommodation support to 19 families. We also provided hygiene packages to 520 families who settled in temporary accommodation centers.

Covid-19 Pandemic – Cash Support: Support to Life provided one-time cash support of TL 1000 to individuals affected by the pandemic who belonged to the most vulnerable groups. Of our 2066 beneficiaries living in Istanbul, Mersin, Şanlıurfa, Mardin and Batman provinces, 1530 were women and 1851 were refugees. In addition, we provided TL 1,000 in cash support to 325 female household heads at risk of gender-based violence in Adana and Hatay to mitigate the negative effects of the pandemic. We expect to continue this support in the coming months.