3.500 kilometres on its own axis

Ottobock employee Ada Mikyas provides emergency aid for earthquake victims

Image Donation Ada Mikyas (Earthquakes): Transporter

Friday, 24 March 2023

In order to support her family and the locals in Ördekdede near Gaziantep after the severe earthquake, IT Project Manager Ada Mikyas has launched a private aid campaign: Together with her brother Denis Mikyas, she collected donations in kind and transported them 3.500 kilometres from Hanover to the Turkish disaster zone.

When Ada's family learned of the earthquake, they immediately launched a broadcast to inform all of their relatives. Her grandparents lived only 20 kilometres from the epicenter. Ada's grandfather did not survive the natural disaster, her 84-year-old grandmother is physically handicapped and dependent on help. For Ada's family, it was clear: We will help as much as we can!

Immediately, Ada's father and his siblings flew to Turkey to visit their mother. “We were in constant contact with my father, so we knew what was most urgently needed on the ground and how we could help,” Ada says. In addition to food and hygiene items, heating fans, auxiliary heaters, kettles and warm clothing were in demand due to the winter temperatures.

Incredible helpfulness

Ada has launched an appeal for donations via her WhatsApp status. “Everything went incredibly fast. I posted it, my friends shared it and less than 24 hours later, our donors handed in the first relief supplies to me and to our second collection point in Dorste near Osterode – an incredible willingness to help,” Ada says gratefully. After three days, they already had enough donations to fill Ada's station wagon and a Sprinter. They even had a wheelchair for their grandmother in their luggage when Ada and Denis set out on the long journey.

After two days they arrived in Ördekdede. “The destruction was indescribable,” Ada describes. “The roads were torn open and we stood in the middle of a huge crater landscape.” In the meantime, the Civil Protection Agency has set up tents in which all villagers have found shelter. No one was allowed to stay in the houses because the earth kept shaking. Ada's father quickly secured all valuables before her grandparents' house collapsed completely, like many other houses in the area.

The victims were all the more grateful when Ada and Denis distributed the donations in kind. They then installed electricity in the tents in for the fan heaters, auxiliary heaters and kettles they brought along. “The locals were so happy that they were able to warm up on the icy nights,” Ada recalls. Up to their departure after a total of five days, they support the clean-up work. “Unfortunately, it is still not clear whether the village can be rebuilt. We will do everything we can to allow my grandmother to leave her home and live with our family,” Ada says.

In order to support Ada financially in her personal charity campaign, Ottobock employees quickly opened a PayPal donation account. The proceeds of 1.970 euros will benefit Ada, her family and the inhabitants of Ördekdede. Overjoyed at the great commitment, Ada would like to thank all the donors: “With your help, we were able to achieve so much more in the crisis zone than we initially believed.”

In our newsletter, we regularly provide information on the current development of the Ottobock Global Foundation's relief campaign for people in need – relief for earthquake victims, as well as the commitment of our employees. You can also follow our social media activities on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. We are looking forward to a Like!


Image Donation Ada Mikyas (Earthquakes): Transporter


Image Donation Ada Mikyas (Earthquakes): Destroyed house


Image Donation Ada Mikyas (Earthquakes): Camp

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