York community joins efforts to help earthquake victims

Deeply moved by the devastation caused by Saturday’s earthquake in Pakistan, Afghanistan and northern India, members of the York community are joining with Canadians, aid agencies and the international community in a collective desire to assist the victims of this disaster.

“The scale of this tragedy and the human suffering it has caused is just staggering,” said President and Vice-Chancellor Lorna R. Marsden. “Many members of the York community have family and friends from the region. Our compassion as a community can bring hope to those who have survived the initial devastation but are in need of immediate assistance.”  

Right: Buildings were flattened by Saturday’s earthquake which also destroyed much of the area’s infrastructure and left 30,000 dead and 2.5 million in northern Pakistan homeless

Marsden expressed these sentiments earlier in the week to Pakistan Consul General Ghalib Iqbal, along with the condolences of the York community in the wake of the country’s worst earthquake in more than a decade.  
The death toll from the massive, 7.6-magnitude quake is currently 30,000. Seven million people have been displaced, including 2.5 million in Pakistan. In northern Pakistan and Kashmir, entire villages have been buried under debris, while international aid and rescue efforts have been hampered by difficult conditions. 
The Office of the Associate Vice President International will provide special emergency bursaries to York international students whose families have been directly affected by the earthquake. Students can call 416-736-5177 for further information. 

York’s Centre for Student Community & Leadership Development has contacted a number of student groups to offer administrative and logistical assistance for student-led fundraising efforts. The following student groups are already actively raising funds for earthquake victims in the region: Pakistani Students Federation, Muslim Students Association, Bharatiya at York, the York Federation of Students and Shalom Salam. For further information, students are asked to contact the Centre for Student Community & Leadership Development at 416-736-5144.
Donations to relief agencies
Information is available online for those who wish to make a donation to charitable organizations such as the Canadian Red Cross, UNICEF Canada or The Salvation Army in Canada.