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UAE entrepreneur Dr Shamsheer Vayalil donates Dh5 million towards earthquake relief in Turkey and Syria

Fund to help relocate those who lost their homes and rehabilitate quake-hit victims

Dr Shamsheer Vayalil, Founder and Chairman, Burjeel Holdings
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Dr Shamsheer Vayalil, Founder and Chairman of Burjeel Holdings, today announced a Dh5 million fund donation to the Emirates Red Crescent to join global relief efforts in supporting those affected by the devastating earthquakes that hit Turkey and Syria last week.

The donation, which was announced on the first day of the World Government Summit (WGS) in Dubai, will be used to support both nations with urgent humanitarian supplies, medicines, as well as funding relocation efforts for families affected by the natural calamity.

Parts of Turkey and Syria were hit by a 7.8-magnitude earthquake on February 6 followed by a series of aftershocks, killing more than 34,000 people so far, as per the World Health Organisation (WHO) with expectations that the natural disaster could affect up to 23 million people.

The Dh5 million donation from Dr Shamsheer follows the UAE leadership’s support and efforts to extend philanthropic assistance to the earthquake-hit countries, including aid worth over Dh367 million.

“The UAE leadership’s quick response to the disaster in Turkey and Syria demonstrates their unwavering commitment to humanitarian support and causes. The Dh5 million fund donation is part of our ongoing efforts to assist with overall relief work in the quake-hit region. My heart goes out to all affected by the devastating earthquake, and I hope this contribution will support their needs,” says Dr Shamsheer.


The Emirates Red Crescent also expressed appreciation for the generous donation from Dr Shamsheer, noting that it will be used to fund the reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts in the affected areas. The organisation has launched the Bridges of Goodness campaign to aid the earthquake victims and has urged the community to support it.

Philanthropic efforts in the UAE and beyond

The latest support is yet another significant announcement from Dr Shamsheer, a well-known philanthropist who has assisted communities during natural disasters through several notable initiatives in the past.

In May 2018, Dr Shamsheer joined The Giving Pledge, an initiative created by Microsoft founder Bill Gates and business magnate Warren Buffett to support causes globally. He was at the forefront of the battle against Covid-19 in the UAE by supporting healthcare efforts through a steady supply of essential medicines, and professionals such as nurses and doctors.

He is also a regular contributor to the 1 Billion Meals initiative of Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI).

Dr Shamsheer has often aided efforts in India, including significant contributions to the Indian Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund. In 2018, he sent a flight of medical supplies and protective gear to assist the south Indian state of Kerala in its efforts to fight the Nipah virus.


This support in Turkey and Syria is the latest in a series of philanthropic initiatives by Dr Shamsheer that have helped tens of thousands globally.