NHS worker who lost her purse in the UK a year ago baffled after it turns up in Turkey

Nikita accepted her purse was gone forever (Image: Caters News Agency)

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An NHS test and trace worker who lost her purse in England was shocked to discover it had been discovered in Turkey over a year later.

Nikita Turvey desperately searched her home and work from top to bottom after she realised she'd lost her purse in September 2019 – but sadly, it was nowhere to be found.

The 24-year-old from Harlow, Essex, had accepted that it was gone for good and set about the annoying task of ordering all new cards, work passes and I.Ds.

But, over one year later in November 2020, she received a message from a man on Instagram of a photograph of the student card that has been inside her lost purse.

Kaya found the purse on the floor and tried to track Nikita down
(Image: Caters News Agency)

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The man, named Kaya, who works with recycling materials in Turkey, found Nikita’s purse on the ground, so he decided to try and track the rightful owner down on social media.

The two have since struck up an unlikely friendship and talk regularly, with Nikita saying she would love to meet up with Kaya if he ever had the chance to come to the UK.

Nikita said: "I have no idea when or how I lost it, I just know at that time I was working a lot. It might have somehow fallen into a recycling bin.

"I spent a solid week looking everywhere at home, at work, in all my coat pockets, in old bags. I looked everywhere but had no luck.

The duo spoke a lot in the first couple of days after Kaya told her he found her purse
(Image: Caters News Agency)

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"I had no idea that at that time it was already starting its journey to Turkey.

"Then in November, I had a random request in my messages in Instagram. I was a bit wary at first.

"But then I realised he had found my purse, and I was gobsmacked when I realised he wasn’t from England.

"We talked a lot for a few days. He sent me a video out walking in turkey and I was showing him what England is like.

Nikita would love for Kaya to visit the UK
(Image: Caters News Agency)

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"It was quite nice to be connected in such a nice humane way after the year of lockdown, and feeling so disconnected from everyone in the world.

"I'd definitely like to meet up with Kaya if he ever made his way to the UK!"

When Nikita told Kaya to just throw the purse out, Kaya adorably said he would keep the two 20p coins that were in it as a 'memory' – and jokingly added that he would bring the purse to England one day to return it to her.

While she is thankful she was lucky in this case, Nikita warns of the dangers of England sending recycling to Turkey – both on a personal level and for the environment.

She had no idea her recycling ended up in Turkey
(Image: Caters News Agency)

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She added: "I had no idea our recycling went to Turkey. I kind of assumed we sent it abroad but I didn’t realise the vast scale in which we do.

"Since then I have learnt more about what we do with our recycling and wrote to my MP to share my concerns.

"We are literally overfilling Turkey, and other countries, with our recycling. It seems so backwards that we don’t do it ourselves.

"It’s unnecessarily adding to our carbon footprint.

"It also worried me because lots of people’s data goes into recycling, and things like my purse could have led to fraud and other problems.

"But thankfully for me, I’ve made a friend.

"There’s nothing Kaya could have gained from messaging me except just general excitement over the purse making it to Turkey and wanting to share it with me and there’s something lovely about that.

"I think social media can be a negative thing in a lot of people’s lives but this shows how it can be used to bring people together and connect people from overseas."

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