The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO)’s newly founded chapter GOPIO Edison organized a virtual musical fundraising event on March 12, 2023, to collect donations for those suffering in the aftermath of the Turkey earthquakes.
On Feb. 6, 2023, two massive earthquakes and several aftershocks crippled southern and central Turkey and northern and western Syria.
Pallavi Verma Belwariar, an Indian singer-musician who is also the president of GOPIO Edison New Jersey, opened the virtual show urging people to make donations for the people of Turkey who have been suffering following the tragic natural disaster.
“When the massive earthquake happened in Turkey and Syria, GOPIO Connecticut took the initiative to send relief materials including packaged food, men’s and women’s jackets, blankets, baby foods, diapers and orthopedic supplies. In fact, the person who started the initiative was Mrs Bina Mehta,” GOPIO International chairman Dr Thomas Abraham said at the virtual event.
“Today’s fundraiser will be used exclusively to send diapers of all sizes to the victim’s children,” he added.
Speaking at the event, Bina Mehta said that she was working with the Turkish Embassy and their national disaster management organization called AHAD. Mehta has been carrying out relief activities with the help of the Turkish Embassy and the Turkish Airlines.
“We were able to bring in resources, everything on an emergency basis as required starting from diapers to sanitary napkins to clothing, medication, food, blankets, tents, sleeping bags… we were right away able to collect funds and supply in thousands,” Mehta informed.
“The nature of the natural disaster is so profound, the numbers that we officially hear from the media which is the death toll of around 50,000 that is nothing close to reality. Our attention is elsewhere and that’s why we won’t hear these things in the news,” she added.
The GOPIO organization, which was founded at the First Global Convention of People of Indian Origin in New York in 1989, has over 100 chapters across 40 countries. GOPIO Edison was introduced in March 2022.