Doosan Bobcat’s €800k gift helps 533 businesses restart in quake-ravaged Turkey

Vedat Gündüz’s restaurant was completely destroyed, but he’s back serving customers now (Images courtesy of Doosan Bobcat/People in Need)
Construction machinery maker Doosan Bobcat donated €800,00 last year to help small businesses in Turkey get going again after violent earthquakes struck in February.

They destroyed or damaged some 240,000 buildings in the southeastern Anatolia region of Turkey and northwestern Syria.

1.25 million people were made homeless.

Twelve months on, the company says it has helped 533 businesses restart, breathing life into the local economy.

It worked with aid charity People in Need to disburse the funds.

‘Keeping me motivated’

It gave a cash grant to restaurant owner Vedat Gündüz, whose premises were completely destroyed.

He set up again in a shipping container with seating for 40 customers inside and out.

“Thanks to funding I was able to purchase the cooking materials and equipment, allowing me to start my work again,” he said.

“I now have one part-time and two full-time employees. Seeing them working and making money to support their families is what’s keeping me motivated to work and continue this journey.”

‘A complete loss’

The same thing happened to lighting shop owner Volkan Alparslan, whose three-storey lighting showroom was reduced to rubble.

The quakes reduced Volkan Alparslan’s three-storey lighting showroom to rubble, but he’s trading again now

The cash allowed him to replenish his stock and jumpstart his business.

“Though I experienced a complete loss, my hope remains intact,” he said.

“I’m steadfast in my commitment to regain what I’ve lost.”

Like a medicine’

Emine Çelik is a street food seller specialising in Turkish toasted sandwiches.

Thanks to Doosan Bobcat’s funding, she’s back to slinging snacks.

“The grant was like a medicine for me, a lifeline,” she said.

“It allowed me to purchase the necessary equipment and tools for my shop, along with the materials needed for toasts.

“I was able to stand on my feet again.

“I’m a strong woman, and I will do whatever it takes to support my family and achieve our dreams.”

Gary Hornbacher, President for the Europe, Middle East and Africa at Doosan Bobcat, said: “All the stories that we hear from the beneficiaries of the early recovery project illustrate the resilience and determination, values that we hold dear.

“It is through these partnerships that we can make a real difference.”

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