This past weekend our volunteers have returned from Van, Turkey, but Fuel Relief Fund continues to distribute Fuel to help keep the elderly, infirm and poor warm in the areas stricken by the earthquake in Turkey.
First of all, we have our donors to thank for this. Without your unfaltering support none of this would be possible. We especially want to thank GlobalGiving for their generous contribution and the Lions Club of the Netherlands for their kind donation and assistance. We are able to continue to give away free fuel (coal) by coordinating with the non-profit organizer in the city of Van, along with the coal company, and a Turkish English teacher. Together we developed a plan to ensure that deliveries continue to those most in need. Fuel Relief Fund is overseeing the effort from our headquarters in Riverside, CA. The victims of the earthquake in Turkey have a long winter ahead of them and many will not have the means to stay warm and healthy, unless we carry on with our effort. All funds we receive will be earmarked for Turkey. We will purchase and deliver coal as long as we receive donations to fund this cause. This is a great step for Fuel Relief Fund as this is the first time that our mission to provide fuel will continue after our staff has left a disaster zone.
The last few days our volunteers were in Van, underscored the continued need to provide a source of warmth for the people in the area. "The nights were bitter cold. The situation was so desperate that one night we encountered people who had taken the wood from their window frames to burn in order to stay warm. Sometimes we were out until 3 in the morning delivering coal. It was heartbreaking to see the living conditions for so many, but uplifting to see their faces and the outpouring of gratitude when they realized we were bringing them enough coal to warm their home or tent for a month."
The Vice Governor of Van, Atay Uslu, also wanted us to tell all Fuel Relief Fund volunteers, donors and the USA how much these coal deliveries mean to him and the people of Van. A lot of people have left this city that at one time housed around a million people. We guess that over 50% have left or will leave the area to find warmth, jobs and a better life. Those left behind do not have the means to move and need our help. If people have enough coal to last at least a month, they will be able to spend more time focusing on other needs, and hopefully it will encourage people to stay and try to rebuild.
Fuel Relief Fund was referred to, in Van, as an International Aid non-profit agency. We were only 1 of 13 agencies from around the world that came to assist after the devastating quake. Our organization has come a very long way in a short period of time!! All board members, volunteers, and donors should be proud to be an important component of our charity. We know the people of Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Haiti, Japan and now Turkey, thank you all very much.
You can always contact us at (909) 322 1481 if you have any questions
Please check out Robert and Ted's Blog.
FUEL RELIEF FUNDKris Salas
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