F1-UNICEF Cooperation in a bid to reach out to Turkish and Syrian earthquake victims

An F1-UNICEF partnership aims to help earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria

As a result of a devastating earthquake that struck southern Turkey and northern Syria on February the 6th, it has been reported that more than 22000 people have lost their lives as the cities of Gaziantep and Antakya have crumbled to the ground, plunging the region into crisis. There was an earthquake measuring 7.5 on the Richter scale along the Turkish-Syrian border.

 As a result of this unprecedented event, Formula One has joined hands with UNICEF, a humanitarian aid organization. This is in a bid to help reach out to Turkish and Syrian victims of the earthquake.

UNICEF has been on the ground, saving and assisting children and families that have been affected by the disaster. In Turkey, the UNICEF country office is supporting search and rescue efforts and distributing hygiene kits, blankets, and warm clothing to children and families in need. Rescue efforts from across the world have flown into Turkey in an effort to save those trapped under the rubble. UNICEF teams have also coordinated the evacuation to safe spaces of children living in group homes in areas affected by the quake. Their primary focus on helping Syrians is on water, sanitation and hygiene, child protection services, nutrition, and education.

Upon their partnership, Formula One and UNICEF have announced that their agenda is to help vulnerable children impacted by the earthquake. F1 has teamed up with UNICEF to provide relief to those affected by the earthquake in Turkey and Syria, as well as provide digital learning access for vulnerable children. It is not the first time the two parties have collaborated. This also saw all 20 drivers sign a petition to help UNICEF’s efforts in Ukraine in March 2022. According to F1, the partnership is estimated to reach out to 6.5 million children from vulnerable and marginalized communities in being able to access quality education.

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F1 President Stefano Domenicali alluded that every child has a right to quality education and to be protected during emergencies. He also stated that in a sport where research, technology, and innovation play a significant role in a driver and team’s success, education is at the core of Formula One. 70% of 10-year-olds have been observed to lack basic literacy skills and have limited accessibility to digitization, according to a report from UNICEF. As a result, the partnership will also look at improving access to digitization devices for children. The Chief Executive of the UK Committee for UNICEF asserted that the world is facing an education crisis. This crisis involves millions of young children being deprived of education, including access to the technology they need to learn and flourish. He also stated that investment in young children’s education will preserve the future and will curb the education crisis that can have detrimental effects if not attended to. 

The partnership, with Formula 1, ensures that more children have access to quality learning and the soft and academic skills training they need to succeed in all their endeavors. It is UNICEF's strong belief that sports unite people, creating room for advocacy on issues crippling young children, including those trapped in humanitarian emergencies.

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