The Turkey-Syria earthquake that struck in the early hours of Monday 6 February was among one of the world’s deadliest on record and for many, beyond comprehension in terms of its scale. Sadly, weeks later, aftershocks and their repercussions continue to severely impact those living in the region displacing, injuring and sadly killing more people in the peak of a harsh winter.

For one of Datamars own family members, Serkan Yeniay, the tragedy is very close to home. We spoke to Serkan to learn more about his background, his career journey and role at Datamars and to understand what the devastating earthquake in his homeland has meant to him.

Serkan, a senior global product manager for AHDS based in Switzerland, was born in Turkey and grew up in Istanbul which he describes as “probably one of the most beautiful cities in the world”.

“Previously I was working for one of the leading animal health companies, and I was one of the customers of Simcro. That time, I was very impressed with the quality of the products and their solution,” recounts Serkan. “Then I started following the company closely. On the other hand, one of my ambitions in my career was working with a mixed culture in a global position. When I came across my role on LinkedIn it was absolutely a perfect match, working in a global role in such a company like Datamars.”

But Serkan’s love of animal health wasn’t born from an agricultural background.

“None of my parents have any veterinary or agriculture background,” he explains, “but I decided to study veterinary medicine to become a vet. Because I was believing that veterinarians have a great potential to work in many different fields. I started my career as a sales rep in an animal health company and I continued to study a bit more to obtain an MBA degree. After 10 years’ experience in animal health industry, my thoughts from the past have come true and I am in Datamars now.”

Serkan has been overwhelmed by the generosity and support he has received since he joined Datamars in June 2022. He relocated from Turkey to Switzerland to take up his current role and now helps define the overall product vertical strategy and roadmap, life cycle management, leading pipeline through Datamars Innovation Process. He also conducts voice of customer surveys for new projects and delivers technical/portfolio consultancy for the sales team.

Serkan says he is grateful for the support he has received at Datamars but also from his wife who he says is the key person who always encourages him.

“She has encouraged me to take the right steps in my career. Especially before the relocation, although she had to leave her family, friends as well as her career behind. She is the one who supported me the most, so I am very fortunate.”

In speaking about the recent devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, Serkan shares his own experiences of watching this take place from afar.

“I still have a very strong connection to Turkey and was living there until June 2022,” Serkan shares. “I am still in contact with people I know there and my wife, daughter and I go home a few times in a year as a family. My wife and I have our families, relatives and friends living in Turkey, mainly in Istanbul. The city is 1,000 kilometres away from the earthquake’s epicentre so fortunately our family are safe. However, more than 42,000 people have died in the region and hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced.”

Serkan is grateful for the global support following the first devastating earthquake.

“Turkey received huge support from all around the word. Many countries have sent their rescue teams and saved dozens of people from under the rubble. I am grateful for their solidarity. I am quite sure that Turkey and Turkish people will never forget any help made. There have been medical products, food and clothes donated and housing support. This is amazing. And many colleagues in Datamars, who know I am Turkish, have reached out to me with their condolences. Many thanks again.”

Serkan adds that donations are still needed to help those in Turkey and neighbouring Syria to provide essentials like food, water, clothing and shelter and suggests a few avenues that people can take if they also wish to help.

“I believe that the size of donation doesn’t really matter as it all helps. I have personally donated to AHBAB which is the most active and reliable organization in the region. But other donors may prefer a global organization such as Red Cross or UNHCR. I certainly encourage others to contribute if they can and sincerely thank them in advance if so!”

If you’re interested in donating to help provide aid to the people of Turkey and Syria, Serkan suggests one of the following three charities for contributions:

Red Cross