A compilation of Co Lab’s Turkish Hub’s student reflections after the earthquakes that ravaged Turkey and Syria:

Written by Efe Aktas:

Hi, everyone. I am Efe Aktaş. I am an 8th Grade student at Ari Private Middle School. Today I am going to talk about the status of Turkey right now.

As you all know we are going through hard times as a nation. We are really sad to watch the heartbreaking news of a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hitting the eastern part of Turkey and Syria, killing and injuring a growing number of people. National officials in both countries are leading search and rescue operations, while anticipating the increased need for trauma care to treat the injured.

Everyone has become one heart for the people in need. And some news of hope is coming.

As an example, people have established a fund and donations are coming in from all over the world. Happily, the amount has reached up to 30 million TL.

As the World Health Organization Director, General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said during the briefing on earthquake in Türkiye and the Syrian Arab Republic on February 7, 2023: ‘’This is a moment when we must come together in solidarity, as one humanity, to save lives and alleviate the suffering of people who have already suffered so much’’.

I am happy that many countries are sending help.

I am happy to see that rescue teams are coming to save people under the wreckage and the injured. We thank all of the nations that have extended a helping hand.

People are under the wreck and It’s not their fault but some of the construction workers of those buildings could have done more. Some of them didn’t want to pay for a safer framework or earthquake-resistant materials. They were greedy. Of course not every building was earthquake resistant and there were buildings that collapsed because of being old but the workers should have checked them to see if it would collapse in a disaster like this. Unfortunately, they hadn’t done so and they’re guilty for that.

There is an SDG that says exactly what needs to be done.

I am talking about SDG#11: Sustainable Cities and Communities. I am talking about a goal to:

  • Substantially increase the number of cities and human settlements adopting and implementing integrated policies and plans towards inclusion, resource efficiency, mitigation and adaptation to climate change, and resilience to disasters.
  • Support least developed countries, including through financial and technical assistance, in building sustainable and resilient buildings utilizing local materials.

If we take action under this goal, we will build a safer and more sustainable world for people and help prevent deaths and injuries in the future.

I am hopeful because I have a goal. I want to become an architect.  I will know how to implement my research and put my knowledge into practice.

Thank you all for listening to me.


Written by Alp Eren Ertem:

Today, I stand before you with a heavy heart, as we witness the devastating effects of the recent earthquakes in Kahramanmaras, Turkey. The magnitude of this tragedy is overwhelming, leaving behind a trail of destruction, loss and heartbreak. But despite this, I believe that there is still hope. Hope that together, we can make a difference.

As we send our prayers to those who have been affected by this disaster, it is important that we do not stop there. We must take action and show our support to the people of Turkey in any way we can. Whether it be through donations, volunteering, or spreading awareness, every effort counts and can bring hope to those who need it most.

To the ones who have lost their homes and families, know that you are not alone. The world stands with you in this difficult time and is ready to offer support. Your strength is a source of inspiration to us all.

And to those who have been rescued, we celebrate your bravery and commend the efforts of the first responders who risked their lives to save others. Your determination to overcome this tragedy is a testament to the human spirit.

In times of crisis, it is easy to feel helpless and hopeless. Let us not forget that we have the power to make a positive impact, to bring light to the darkness and hope to the hopeless. The people of Kahramanmaras need our support now more than ever, and it is our duty as global citizens to respond.

Let us join together in this effort to help those affected by the earthquakes in Kahramanmaras. Let us offer hope and bring comfort to those who are suffering. Let us never forget that, together, we can make a difference.


Written by Bilge Sena Uysal:

We are all saddened to hear the horrible news.

The news which destroyed thousands of lives.

The Kahramanmaraş earthquake on February 6, 2023.

Today we come back to life with souls rescued from under the wreck.

We’ll always love and count the big-hearted people who are waiting for their relatives to be rescued there in cold.

We promise to be a part of their souls, appreciate what they are going through and help them as much as we can.

We will try to be patient and brave like the patient and brave rescuers who are saving children and their families from the disaster, and cold darkness.

Let us give them hope! Let us be courageous, patient and hardworking!

A word of hope, a heart of gold!


Written by Duru Toker:

Unfortunately, we are living a horrible disaster these days…

We are working hard, shoulder to shoulder, to help those who have been suffering from Kahramanmaraş earthquake.

Dear children and dear families, we are collecting aid to help you! A lot of people from Turkey and other countries are sending you warm clothes, food and other necessary items.

Now, it’s time to build up new hopes and we are hopeful for every new day!

I am sure everything will be better soon!

As in the Independence War, we are a mighty force to overcome all difficulties with one heart and one mind! Our faith is endless!