Dorset groups are rallying to send aid to Turkey and Syria after an earthquake which has claimed more than 11,000 lives and caused widespread destruction.

The 7.8 magnitude quake is the deadliest seismic event in more than a decade and has seen more than 30,000 people injured and displaced many more - and authorities expect the death toll to continue to climb.

Local groups are rallying their efforts to raise aid in the hopes of saving lives.

Weymouth Rotary Club has already acted and donated three ‘Shelterboxes’ - worth £2,000 - which have been matched by the club’s hosts, the Pilgrim House Trust for a total of six.

Rick Simmonds of Weymouth Rotary said: "The situation definitely requires immediate assistance which is why we jumped on it.

"We have worked with Shelterbox in a number of situations including when people were fleeing Ukraine after the invasion. We have a long-standing relationship and they do good work.

"There are millions displaced and the important thing is we get them water, shelter and safety as quickly as possible."

Shelterboxes are complete kits, adapted to the needs of the situation; whether it be war or natural disaster. Tents, tarpaulins, tools, blankets, cooking sets and water filters can all be provided, and working with partners on the ground, delivered to the affected area incredibly fast.

In the coming days, Weymouth Rotary will be collecting donations from around the town.

Other Rotary Clubs in Dorset are also working to collect aid.

Mark Townsend of Portland Rotary said: “It is clearly a tragedy and we want to do everything we can to help.

“We will be organising collections and I would urge anyone who can to please donate. It is important that we get aid out and quickly.”

Bridport Rotary Club will be out raising funds on the main streets of Bridport near Buckydoo Square on Saturday from 9am to 1pm to raise funds for Shelterboxes and Water Survival Boxes.

Many rotary clubs in the area are also aiming to donate Water Survival Boxes, which provide survival items, particularly means of converting contaminated water into safe drinking water.