Fundraising for Uighur Orphans and Women in Turkey

By Banu Sutuq

Aydin Anwar is delighted to see the campaign she has run on LaunchGood since 24 January 2019, has been heading fast to reach its goal of $15,000 USD.

Aydin, a Uighur activist who resides in Washington D.C., started a campaign on LaunchGood, a crowdfunding platform focused on the Muslim communities worldwide, to fundraise for Uighur women and orphans who are struggling to survive in Turkey, mainly in the country’s largest city of Istanbul.

Stating the motive behind this campaign, Aydin said: “I’ve been to Turkey three times since 2016, and each time I have witnessed the extreme financial and psychological distress faced by the Uighur refugee community there, especially orphans and women. Their fathers and or husbands have either been killed or sent to concentration camps, and they have no way of contacting their remaining family members in East Turkistan to receive financial help. Together with several friends, I decided to run a campaign to fundraise for the Uighur women and orphans living in Turkey.”

This campaign allows donors to donate for several causes, including providing a family meal, covering one or several families’ grocery expenditure and rent. Aydin said: “These funds will be delivered directly to Uighur refugee women and children living in Istanbul, particularly in the neighborhood district of Zeytinburnu. The funds will be used to help them to cover rent, food, clothing, and other basic necessities. ”

This campaign is working with the Aybilig Women and Children School, a school serving Uighur orphans and refugees in Istanbul, to deliver the funds directly to the families in late March.

The campaign has gained a little over $10,000 USD in three days since it started. It will close on Apr 6, 2019, 4:00 PM.

Currently, Turkey hosts over 300,000 Uighurs, many of whom are women and children whose husbands and or fathers have been either sent to a concentration camp, imprisoned or killed by the Chinese regime. They have also been cut off from contacting any remaining family members in East Turkistan, making it nearly impossible to receive financial support from their hometowns.

The campaigner Aydin said: “Through this campaign, we would like to see tangible changes in their life by helping them financially. That is what we can do at the moment.”


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