Very few people will have missed the news of the wildfires that raged across Southwest Turkey for two weeks in August this year, leaving behind a terrible trail of destruction.

Firefighters, search and rescue associations, and citizens stood side by side to fight the fires, whilst others took to collecting much-needed supplies and raising money to support the massive effort.

Çalış Beach Life group pull out all the stops

The members of the Çalış Beach Life group pulled out all the stops and, as well as collecting food and supplies, raised a fantastic 27,520 TL in donations to be used to fight the fires.

And whilst the fires may now be out, the recovery work is ongoing and, in some areas, will be for a long time to come.

The presentation

In a ceremony held at the Fethiye Municipality offices on Friday, the money was presented to representatives of the Fethiye branches of AKUT (Search and Rescue Association) and MAG (Neighborhood Disaster Volunteers Emergency Response Association).

Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Mayor Gözde Hoşafçı said, “On behalf of our Municipality, I would like to thank you for your efforts. We will ensure that the donations collected will be used in the right areas.” 

Making a speech on behalf of AKUT, Hasan Ongün underlined that they have been in close cooperation with Fethiye Municipality for years. Ongün, who thanked the sensitivity of foreigners residing in Fethiye on social issues, gave information about various projects realized by AKUT.

Speaking on behalf of MAG, Ercan Kolcu said, “We are fighting shoulder to shoulder in the fight against natural disasters. Our municipality has great support for us in this regard. We would like to thank each and every one of the members of the Çalış Beach Life.”

The Honorary Consul of the United Kingdom in Fethiye, Mustafa Şıkman, said, “I would like to thank the Çalış Beach Life group for their contributions. Your good deeds will be used in good places. On behalf of the people of Fethiye, I thank you.”

Glenn Mayes, representing the Çalış Beach Life group said, “We are very sorry for the mega-fires that took place in Turkey this summer. Many Britons and other foreign nationals living in Turkey at that time were firefighting.”

He stressed that they personally participated in the work and that they, as foreign nationals living in Fethiye, were very pleased to deliver the aid they collected to the right people under the supervision of Fethiye Municipality.

He added that they would like to thank Fethiye Municipality officials for their sensitivity to transparency and to spend the aid they collect in the right hands and that they will continue to be in solidarity with the Turkish society through similar campaigns from now on.

The ceremony ended with the delivery of the certificate of appreciation prepared by AKUT and MAG to Glenn Mayes representing the formation of “Çalış Beach Life.”

A thank you from Glenn

“I would like to thank each and every member of the group who made this possible with their donations. Mehmet Burak Torun, Süleyman İlker Gürtunca, Cafe Pazar and Lime Bar, Julie Miller who collected the donations and food that were needed, Bülent Kersu who delivered donations of clothes and food around the area, Julie McKenzie for all her hard work collecting and exchanging monies. Also Lyn Ward for arranging everything with the Belediye and Yavuz Topateş for making us welcome.”