As I shared earlier via Instagram, I’ve spoken to our Sabah team on the ground in Gaziantep: all of our partners, craftspeople and their families are safe. They are all finding warm & secure places to spend the night, given the risk of aftershocks and additional earthquakes.
There’s no city more near & dear to my heart than Gaziantep — the place I’ve visited the most times in my life; at least twice a year, for the last decade, and most recently, last week. I consider our partners and craftspeople in Gaziantep to be my second family; and Oğuzhan, the son of our workshop’s owner, the brother I never had — a sentiment we echoed to each other as we embraced and I departed Gaziantep this past Friday, having spent the previous week there. I could never have imagined a devastating earthquake would strike just 48 hours later. My heart is heavy, and I’m so saddened by the destruction and loss of life that has occurred.
Over the past 10 years, we’ve grown our workshop and presence in Gaziantep from just a few to now almost 50 Turkish and Syrian craftspeople and families; and indirectly, many more. Gaziantep is inextricably tied to the story, growth, and success of Sabah; and, in turn, Sabah to the success of our communities in Gaziantep. When you support Sabah, you are supporting the security and livelihoods of these amazing craftspeople & their families. A community that has welcomed me with an open heart, trust, and a level of friendship and camaraderie that is frankly unlike any I’ve ever experienced. The people of Gaziantep are warm & welcoming, operate with a deep sense of integrity and loyalty, and, thankfully, are strong.
I’ve never been more motivated to help, and rally our Sabah people globally to support in both immediate disaster relief and the inevitable rebuilding efforts. That means two things: (1) to facilitate & maximize donations for disaster relief and (2) to continue our business as best we can to ensure sustained investment in the security & livelihoods of our craftspeople & Gaziantep.
To that end, effective immediately and for the foreseeable future, we will be donating 20% of all global sales, online or in stores, to immediate disaster relief funds & organizations. We are also accepting direct donations via the Sabah website HERE. 100% of these donations will be redirected to AKUT, a volunteer-based search & rescue organization that is actively on the ground in Turkey; and the TPF’s Turkiye Earthquake Relief Fund, which disburses funds to local organizations providing critical disaster relief.