Governor Kathy Hochul today joined the CEO and founder of New York State-based food maker Chobani to urge New Yorkers to support fundraising efforts following the earthquakes that affected Türkiye and Syria on February 6.
“Our hearts break for the victims of Türkiye’s devastating earthquake, and our thoughts are with the New Yorkers who continue to grieve the losses of their loved ones overseas,” Governor Hochul said. “With relief efforts under way, I applaud the members of New York’s business community, like Hamdi and his Chobani family, who have already answered the call to help those in need and I encourage all New Yorkers to consider donating their time or resources to support survivors in any way that they can.”
Founder and CEO of Chobani Hamdi Ulukaya said, “We’re witnessing one of the most devastating disasters in the history of Türkiye and the surrounding region. It’s wintertime, it’s cold. The buildings are collapsed, some people are outside, and the death toll has risen to unimaginable numbers. This is my homeland, and my heart is shattered seeing my brothers and sisters suffer such deep loss. New York holds a special place, it is where Chobani started, and today it is my home. I know New Yorkers are some of the most caring, compassionate people anywhere, and I know they will step up to help. Help is needed now and will continue to be critical as the region rebuilds. Businesses have a responsibility to be part of the solution, to bring their innovation, resources, and voices – to stand up for common humanity. I’ve asked for, and I’m overwhelmed by, the generosity and compassion of the business community. Having Governor Hochul join in this cause, as she has so willingly done with us on previous humanitarian crises, makes our mission even stronger.”
Executive Vice President of the Business Council of New York State Paul Zuber said, “New York State has many ties to Türkiye, including through business. The Business Council supports these endeavors from the Governor and businesses, and we would encourage those who can assist in the ongoing relief efforts needed during this critical time of recovery.”
The death toll estimate from the earthquakes is 47,000 people, most deaths occurred in Türkiye. The earthquakes and aftershocks have damaged or destroyed over 200,000 buildings and displaced over two million people.
The United States has mounted a response through USAID, updates and news can be seen here. New York State is home to more Turkish people than any other state in America.