On Tuesday, 28th February 2023, Armenian-Australian Mayor, Councillor Sarkis Yedelian OAM moved a Mayoral Minute, which was unanimously adopted by the City of Ryde Council to donate $10,000 to the Armenian-Australian community’s #TogetherForSyria earthquake relief efforts, reported the Armenian National Committee of Australia.
Earlier this week, the Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC-AU) appealed to councillors, urging them to support the community’s relief efforts by providing direct aid to the Armenian Relief Society Inc. in order to assist Armenians in Aleppo.
The financial contribution seeks to assist those affected by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Turkey and North-West Syria, which has claimed the lives of over 40,000 innocent civilians.
Mayor Yedelian said: “Many residents of Ryde have family members or know of people, who live in the affected areas, and the local community has been working hard to provide tangible assistance to those facing unimaginable hardship.”
Yedelian acknowledged the Armenian-Australian community’s efforts to assist those affected and highlighted that they successfully raised in excess of $100,000 as part of the #TogetherForSyria Telethon last week before urging the City of Ryde Civic service budget to allocate $10,000 to the initiative.
The passage adopted resolved that the most Armenian-populated municipality in Australia will donate $10,000 to the Armenian Relief Society of Australia, coordinating relief efforts in the city of Aleppo and cities bordering Turkey and Syria.
The Council and all in attendance also participated in a Minute of Silence to acknowledge all those who tragically lost their lives in this devastating earthquake.
ANC-AU Executive Director Michael Kolokossian and members of the Armenian Relief Society of Australia were present during the Mayoral Minute and hand-delivered a letter of thanks to the Council for this initiative.
“Syria’s city of Aleppo has been home to our vibrant community since they were forced to march the Syrian desserts during the Armenian Genocide of 1915. This generous donation will go a long way to assist during the moment of deep loss, trauma and heartache,” said Kolokossian.
“We thank all Councillors and in particular, Mayor Sarkis Yedelian, for their support during this crucial time for Syrian-Armenians,” said Armenian Relief Society of Australia Chairperson Nina Kaprielian.
In 2020, the City of Ryde also donated $10,000 to assist with humanitarian relief efforts following the Beirut Blast, from which Ryde City Council contributed $2,500 to support fundraising efforts of the Armenian-Australian community in Lebanon.