OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Turkish community in Oklahoma is raising money for earthquake relief efforts as well as recognizing those who have been lost.

On February 6, 2023, a powerful 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Turkey and Syria. The Associated Press says the quake destroyed buildings and killed tens of thousands of people.

Another earthquake as well as aftershocks rocked the region on Monday, adding to the death toll.

Turkish Oklahomans are coming together to support one another as well as their loved ones in Turkey.

“So, we have a lot of friends living in Oklahoma City that they lost close relatives, brothers, sister-in-laws, nephews, uncles, aunts, a lot of them.” said Muhammad Ali Sezer, Executive Director of Dialogue Institute of Oklahoma.

The earthquake struck Sezer’s hometown in Turkey. He says his mother, father, two brothers and other relatives have been affected.

“My parents, two brothers, close relatives, they have been affected by the earthquake on February 6.” said Sezer. “I immediately called my mom to know just, you know, she’s okay, she’s safe.”

Raindrop Turkish House Oklahoma is hosting a Turkey Earthquake Relief Fundraiser and an interfaith prayer vigil to support those affected by the earthquakes.

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“As a community, as Turkish Oklahomans, we are grieving the loss of our people.” Sezer said.

The interfaith prayer vigil is at St. Paul’s Cathedral Tuesday, Feb. 21, from 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. to recognize victims of the earthquake. The Turkish Food Fair Relief Fundraiser is on Saturday, Feb. 25, from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. at 4444 N. Classen Blvd to raise money for relief efforts.

Raindrop Turkish House says they are accepting donations to help victims in Syria and Southern Turkey. The donation portal can be found at embracerelief.org.

“I keep telling my friends that we have to show Oklahoma Standard.” Sezer added. “We have to react the need as if it happened in Oklahoma.”