Where will the Giro555 money go next? And four other questions

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A rescue team at work in Kahramanmaras
NOS NewsAmended

Now that the rescue operation has come to an end and Dutch aid workers are also returning from the disaster area, the Cooperating Aid Organizations are holding their day of action for Giro555. Because the earthquakes have left millions of people homeless and all kinds of basic services are lacking in the disaster area in Turkey and Syria.

1. What will the money be spent on?

Emergency aid and reconstruction, is the short answer. But what exactly remains to be seen in the near future and it depends on what is needed in the disaster area. “We look closely at where the needs are greatest and the needs are greatest,” says a spokesperson for the action.

For example, aid organizations distributed drinking water, electric heaters, hot meals, hygiene packages, medication and blankets last week.

2. You transfer a donation, and then?

Nine of the eleven charities that are part of the Cooperating Aid Organizations (see box) receive a predetermined percentage of the proceeds. In the affected areas, they work together with local partner organizations, such as the Turkish and Syrian Red Crescent.

Several aid organizations also give cash to affected people. “Then people can choose for themselves what they need most and the money is directly spent in the local community,” says the spokesperson.

Seven Giro555 organizations operate in both Turkey and Syria. Because Plan International and Terre des Hommes do not work in the disaster area, they waive the money for this action.

As a matter of principle, Doctors without Borders (AzG) has not participated in Giro555 since 2006, partly because of one of the criteria for Giro555 to take action: that the media pay attention to the disaster. They are also active in both areas and ask for donations.

“It is great that attention and money is being paid to this terrible situation. But we provide emergency medical care, in situations whether or not they are in the news,” says a spokesperson. “In Nigeria, for example, where we treat thousands of children who are severely malnourished every day.”

3. Will the aid also reach Syria?

This week it became clear that it is difficult to get help on the spot in Syria, which has been torn apart by civil war for twelve years. Three border crossings are now open. But that difficulty does not play a role in the choices aid organizations make, the spokesperson for Giro555 assures.

“Of course it may be more difficult for aid to start in certain places than in others, for example due to the broken infrastructure. But we will never say ‘then it will go to Turkey, because that is easier’.” It remains to be seen in the near future whether the help on the spot will succeed and what further difficulties will be involved.

The aid organizations are preparing for the national day of action:

Giro555 organization: ‘At least 95 percent of the money goes to the victims’

4. How are aid organizations accountable?

From Thursday, every organization must report to Giro555 every three months what they spend and on what. On its site, Giro555 reports for each previous campaign what the money has been spent on, in which places, and in some cases how many people have been helped. The money must be spent within two years as standard.

“Things can go wrong, that’s normal. The situation is incredibly complex and complicated. In these times you sometimes have to take risks,” says Sara Kinsbergen, associate professor of development sociology at Radboud University.

“We all have to accept that things sometimes go wrong. But the aid organizations have years of experience in these areas and in providing emergency aid.” And that is crucial, says Kinsbergen. “We can be confident that the vast majority will end up well and will be spent on emergency aid and reconstruction in the longer term.”

5. How has the money from previous campaigns been spent?

In the past twelve years, money has been raised on Giro555 eleven times, such as famine in parts of Africa and Yemen (2017) and the earthquake in Haiti (2010). In the action for Ukraine, people donated no less than 178 million euros.

In the other ten promotions, a total of more than 288 million euros has been deposited on Giro555. An average of 81 percent of this was spent on on-site assistance. The remainder went to, for example, the rental of a field office on site, transport and the hiring of emergency aid experts and other employees.

  • Many donations to Islamic and Turkish-Dutch emergency aid organizations
  • Giro555 open to earthquake victims Turkey and Syria
  • Final score Giro555 action day for Ukraine: more than 106 million euros
  • Collection

    Earthquakes

  • Interior

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