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Sneak Peek into 2017: One Year of IHH

Bekir Arslan 22.12.2017


We were coming back from a huge and compelling journey at the last days of the 2016. We were passing by the ancient city Aleppo on our way back. Being under siege by Syrian regime and supporters, not allowed to get even basic humanitarian aid, civilians of Aleppo were facing with a grand massacre. Over 5 thousand cars and 40 thousands voyagers joined to the “Open the Road into Aleppo” convoy that has been opened after our reliefs’ consistent call for a humanitarian corridor.  Moreover, during the voyage, 1.208 aid articulated lorries were loaded with donations from all over Turkey for aggrieved and downtrend residents of Aleppo. In the meanwhile, the interferences by Turkey ministration were about to bring a conclusion with diplomatic parleys’ of IHH, UN and other shareholders. At the end of the negotiations, 45 thousand people safely evacuated to safer areas. In the forthcoming days, spokesperson of UN Special Syria Envoy Staffan de Mistura, Jan Egeland was going to state “Beginning with IHH, all non-governmental organizations of Turkey have been putting their signature under great deal of jobs. IHH has accomplished great things.” This is how 2017 began for IHH.

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In March a 5.7 magnitude earthquake occurred in Adiyaman, Turkey. And in February consecutive earthquakes shook Canakkale. A mobile food bank sent to the Adiyaman to satisfy citizens’ needs for hot meal. IHH crew prepared food for 40 thousand people for 8 days.  4 thousand winter clothes, 440 blankets and 110 tents delivered to Canakkale for whose house were damaged during earth tremors.


Rescue for people who stuck under the siege of the regime in Syria continued in the first months of 2017. In April, predominantly women and children, 4 thousand civilians from Humus, Masaya and Zabadani were evacuated by IHH and located in safer zones.


The “IHH Somali Agriculture School Project” that has been actualized previous years came in first in Ak Party Civil Awareness Awards. The Prime Minister Binali Yildirim presented the gift of the project, which IHH got the first place in humanitarian aid category.


With reduction of precipitation, Somali, Nigeria, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Kenya has faced with the most crucial drought danger of 30 years in 2017. Only in Somali, 950 thousands of children have affected by various diseases like strong diarrhea, fever, cholera, rubella, undergoing severe drought and poor nutrition. At the drought areas, even inclined to desert climate, camels have died of thirst. In 2011, IHH had delivered food aid to locals of the district and drilled up to 2 thousand wells. In 2017, emergency food aids were delivered to 155 thousands of people who had adversely affected by drought in Somalia and Ethiopia. Over 600 thousands of people were benefited from water distribution.


In Somali where deaths by drought happened most, a field report to verbalize the crises has been published by IHH team. The report has been declared to the public with a press conference. 250 thousands of people lost their lives in Somali after moribund drought in the in 2011 and mass migrations happened in through countries like Kenya and Ethiopia. When the wounds of 2011 crisis haven’t been dressed yet, Somali encountered another one, in 2017. Addition to urgent food aids, almost 10 thousand people utilizing our foundations deep draw wells against to the drought in Somali. There are 1.731 water draws that IHH welled in Somali.

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At the Yemen, suffering from instability and resuming conflagrations, IHH’s work is continuing which is aimed to families who have effected by disturbance and struggling with impossibilities. Including Ramadan provisions and Feast of Sacrifice shares our relief delivered aid to 300 thousands of indigents in Yemen during 2017.  

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IHH organizes Orphan Solidarity Days to announce orphans work to public and built susceptibility about defenseless children and produce permanent projects for them. During 2017, 651 different projects for orphans actualized on education, health, social and cultural fields. Rather than financial aid, all of the projects are aiming to expedite orphans and their families’ life while earning their keep without being in need. Various social projects like purchasing breeding animals, vocational courses, and agricultural vehicle provision or providing financial support for them to build a family were put into practice. Around the globe, 170 thousand orphans benefitted from the 2017 Orphan Solidarity Days projects.


The project of “Every Classroom Has an Orphan Sibling” that is executed in schools and Qur’an courses with collaboration of IHH, Ministry of National Education, Directorate of Religious Affairs and Egitim-Bir-Sen (Educators Trade Union) has outdistanced four years by the year of 2017. With this project, students in a classroom can take care of the needs of an orphan child with 100 Turkish liras from their spared allowances. Thanks to participation of over 1 million students in 8 thousand schools, the project can provide needs of almost 20 thousand orphans. In total, IHH provides education, food, health and sheltering aid to 90 thousand orphans in 52 countries and 75 cities in Turkey.

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The biggest children center of the world that has been built for war weary orphan children, have opened in Reyhanli, Hatay. The center that has been built with collaboration of IHH and RAF Qatar where will be able to harbor 99 war weary children at once.  At the life center that is built on almost 100 decares, it is aimed to provide all the needs of the children like sheltering, education, food in domestic environment, and provide psychologically support. Addition to 55 homes, there is a mosque, a health center, play areas, therapy center, art atelier, plantation fields and large green spaces at the center.

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More than 2.8 million people lost their physical integrity just only in Syrian war. When we include disabled people from Iraq and Palestine the number hits to 4 million. More than many immigrants can’t have medical treatment as they have migrated from their soils. Living with a missing leg, arm or other body parts have physical and psychological effect, not only in their lives but also their relatives as well. In order to change that situation, IHH initiated High Tech Prosthesis Orthesis Center to let up the misery of disable refugees who can’t get medical treatment. Accomplished by Kuwaiti Beyt’il Zeka Foundation and AID, a prosthetic arm or leg will be provided for those who can’t achieve their goals or dreams because of physical handicaps. The center that has been opened in last April has one office at Istanbul, Sanliurfa and Hatay

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From Palestine to Syria, Moro to Afghanistan, Iraq to Arakan, Pattani to Colombia, IHH was on the roads to convey fruitfulness of the Ramadan to all around the world. In addition to thousands of philanthropists’ all kind of food and money donations, iftar meals have delivered to needy ones, kids were gladden with festive outfits and completed constructions have put into permanent service.  During our 2017 Ramadan voyage, at 104 countries and areas including Turkey, 32.692 persons in need gained 322.692 provision package. 3.100.000 persons have hosted at the fast-breaking meals. Zekat, fitre (Islamic alms money) and redemption monies have transmitted to unfortunate ones. 30 thousand children were presented gift packages, 55.615 orphan gifted festival clothes.


People of Syria haven’t lived a proper Ramadan and can’t have the divine gift of the Ramadan as before. Despite all this, IHH is struggling to convey the vital food, clothes, sheltering and other basic needs to the aggrieved people of Syria. As every year, our works in Syria have continued in Ramadan as well. Just in Ramadan, 30 million bread and 150 thousand food provisions have delivered to the needy people of Syria. Again, during this month, 3 million people served iftar meal. As a result of diplomatic meetings, crucial work has been done for besieged areas. One of them was East Guta where fatwa was requested to eat cats and dogs past years. During Ramadan, food provisions were delivered to the families at the district, iftar served at tables for 120 thousand people.


The 1.200 capacity mosque in Chau Doc, Vietnam which was built by a charitable at the hands of IHH, has been opened in last May. Almost 15 thousand persons attended to the grand opening from various cities of Vietnam and Kampuchea. The mosque carries the title of being the biggest mosque of Vietnam.


The mosque that was built by IHH in Gaza has opened in May and named after the guard of Al-Aqsa Mosque, “Igdirli Onbasi Hasan”. At the mosque that was opened in Friday Prayer, thousand people can pray at once. In Palestine, 1 million people benefited from IHH’s work during 2017.

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Built by the collaboration of IHH, AFAD and IICO Kuwait, Kilis Oncupinar Container City had handed over to needy people of Syria. Costing 10 million dollars, the grand project has 624 duplex containers. The container city can host 7.490 Syrian refugees with having school, prayer room and occupation room.


746 water wells were drilled in 20 countries during 2017. These countries were Chad, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Ghana, Sudan, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Somali, Mali, Djibouti, Senegal, Tanzania, Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, Iraq and India. There happens to be over 6 thousand water drills in 33 countries that were drilled by IHH. Approximately 2.5 million people are benefited from these well around the globe.

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Israel keeps blockading and laying embargo on Gaza, murdering Palestinian youth in the middle of the streets and harassing Al-Aqsa Mosque. Tens of thousands people have marched in Istanbul at the 7th anniversary of “Mavi Marmara Attack” for “Free Quds”.


After the attacks in July, Israel has closed the Al-Aqsa Mosque to worship. The mosque has been closed for Friday Prayer for the first time since 1967 and detectors has been replaced to the entrance of it with turning it into a prison. At 21st of July, thousands of people gathered after Friday Prayer to protest Israel and its execution in Quds.

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A memorial program has been organized in Srebrenica after death of 8.372 persons in mass slaughter during Bosnia War every year. Also, identified bones from mass graves are burring in to martyrdoms of the city. At the 22nd year memorial program of Srebrenica, the MotoBosna crew that departed from Turkey with motorcycles has taken place with IHH organization.


The Marmara Disaster Coordination Center that was built in Bursa by IHH in order to interfere in the natural disasters rapidly in Turkey or around the globe, has put into service. Built on 4 decar land, the center has the characteristic of being the first non-governmental organization in its field. The center is enabling for rapid response during a possible hazard thanks to its close location to main arterial roads and land, sea, air transportation areas. Besides, there are 2.215 trained volunteers in 11 cities’ search and rescue units. 


IHH reached 106 countries and regions during 2017 sacrifice feast voyage. The sacrifice animals that were slaughtered thanks to donations and support of the charitable men’s, have divided into 53.500 shares and 428 thousand lots. Over 2 million indigents have benefited from these shares worldwide. In 12 countries, 23.440 orphan children were gifted brand new clothes for Sacrifice Festive.


The Myanmar Army started operation claiming there have been attacks to the security centers of the country in 24 August 2017 and began Muslim hunt with support of Buddhist gangs. The case turned into one of the biggest humanitarian crises of the last years as over 200 villages were burned down, 3 thousand people slaughtered and 650 thousand people gave a slip and took refuge in Bangladesh. Currently IHH has been continued working at the area for 21 years and naturally became one the humanitarian aid associations to take the action. Providing urgent aid on food, cash, shelter and health for Rohingyas who took refuge in Bangladesh, IHH delivered help for 555 thousand people in 4 months. IHH is going to continue relief works for Rohingyas who are struggling to survive in hard conditions of camps.    

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In 12 November, a 7.3 magnitude earthquake has shaken Iran which affected Halabja city of Iraq, despite its epicenter was near Kermanshah. Over 500 people lost their lives and 8 thousand people injured because of the earthquake. Performing aid relief in Iraq and Iran, IHH squad provided help for 60 thousand people. Moreover, thanks to food court that was sent to Iraq, hot meals were served to earthquake victims for a month. 

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The cataract campaign of IHH that was initiated in 2007 in Africa has reached 100 thousand surgery goals while leaving 10th year behind. By the last months of 2017, 716.897 persons went through medical examinations, 344.029 persons got check up and 100.027 persons began to see again with surgery. Cataract operations are resuming in 14 countries beginning with Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Ghana, Mali, Chad, Uganda, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Niger, Sudan, Ethiopia, Mozambique and Somali. The cataract project that is done with collaboration of AID Alliance of International Doctors is aiming to reach all needy areas of the globe.

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Since British Government relinquished from Palestine in 1948, the intruder Israel State declared Jerusalem as the capital but there hasn’t been any regime to recognize that ordinance. In 2017 December, USA government declared their recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. A large number of states, notably Turkey objected that ordinance claiming it would result in crises.  IHH protested that judgment on 8 December with participation of various non-governmental organizations and political parties in Istanbul and many other cities. One of the ancient cities of the world, Al-Quds is placing at the center of Middle East crises. Even though Jewish residential areas in Jerusalem are considered illegal according to international law, Israel occupation on Palestinian land resumes.

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