Fundraiser at Kurtekotten: Support for earthquake victims

Turkey and Syria have been hit by several earthquakes since the start of February. The Bayer 04 Leverkusen youth players responded to the disaster and, with the support of the youth coach of the U12 and U13 teams Erdal Celik plus parents representative Ercan Karabulut, they have joined in with a fundraising campaign. The donations have helped 160 families so far and the campaign continues.

Erdal Celik, coach of the U12 and U13 teams, together with parents representative Ercan Karabulut, set up a private fundraising campaign. This has also been supported by Reiner Fehl, the parent liaison officer at the Kurtekotten Performance Centre. The call for donations was aimed at families of the Bayer 04 youth players, friends and acquaintances. "We knew from the start that we wanted to help. My family comes from one of the areas affected. Every type of support can be used out there," said Celik.

CELIK: "the response has been massive"

There was an overwhelming response to the aid programme: "We are grateful for all types of support. The readiness to help is really great within Bayer 04 and there was a massive response for our campaign in general," said the coach with emotion.


financial and material donations for families

With €13,000 plus additional material donations, including winter coats from Bayer 04 Leverkusen, Celik and Karabulut set off for the region in Turkey hit by the catastrophe last Monday 13 March. Over five days, the duo visited affected areas to distribute the donations directly in the regions affected. The route covered several cities including Hatay and Gaziantep. "It's difficult to describe what we saw and experienced. It was emotional and dramatic at the same time but it was important for us to be able to support their families out there," declared Karabulut. "We were able to feel the gratitude from the families out there. But we also know that we can only make a small contribution. Nevertheless, we are proud that we got the campaign going," said Karabulut. 

A second trip to Turkey to hand over further donations is planned for the summer.


The first earthquakes were on 6 February 2023 and they affected the south-east of Turkey and the north of Syria. The natural disaster has claimed 50,000 lives to date and it was one of the most serious earthquake disasters of all time. The fundraising campaign by Celik, Karabulut and Fehl continues and donations can be made at any time via the following email addresses:

Erdal Celik:
Ercan Karabulut:

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