Tar­labaşı To­plum Merkezi: em­pow­er­ing a neigh­bor­hood

Turkish Review - - NGO WATCH - ESRA NUR EYG ÖREN

Tar­labaşı is a neigh­bor­hood in cen­tral İs­tan­bul that was and is home to peo­ple of dif­fer­ent eth­nic­i­ties, in­clud­ing Kurds, Ro­mani peo­ple, African im­mi­grants and Syr­ian refugees. The neigh­bor­hood is known to be home to im­pov­er­ished peo­ple and the area was long ne­glected by suc­ces­sive gov­ern­ments. The dis­trict is now go­ing through an ur­ban trans­for­ma­tion pro­ject that has forced many peo­ple out of their homes and the fu­ture of the neigh­bor­hood is un­cer­tain This is­sue’s NGO Watch looks at the

(Tar­labaşı Com­mu­nity Cen­ter, TTM), an or­ga­ni­za­tion from Tar­labaşı that strives to sup­port dis­ad­van­taged chil­dren and women in this neigh­bor­hood. TTM is an in­de­pen­dent or­ga­ni­za­tion whose pur­pose is to pro­vide so­cial, psy­cho­log­i­cal and ed­u­ca­tional sup­port to dis­ad­van­taged chil­dren, youth and women. It was orig­i­nally founded by the İs­tan­bul Bilgi Univer­sity Cen­ter for Mi­gra­tion Re­search in 2006 but now serves as an in­de­pen­dent or­ga­ni­za­tion. The main fo­cus of the TTM is to em­power lo­cal res­i­dents who are strug­gling with all kinds of poverty and de­pri­va­tion and who are alien­ated from so­cial life. The cen­ter not only works to em­power peo­ple in Tar­labaşı but also tar­gets a de­crease in preva­lent prej­u­dices oth­ers feel to­wards Tar­labaşı and to raise aware­ness re­lated to rights and vi­o­la­tions of rights by way of the ad­vo­cacy work it con­ducts. The cen­ter does this by us­ing hu­man rights prin­ci­ples based on so­cial and gen­der equal­ity and with al­ter­na­tive/cre­ative ped­a­gog­i­cal meth­ods. It views all kinds of dis­crim­i­na­tion, prej­u­dice and vi­o­lence as the pri­mary tar­gets that need to be com­bat­ted. When work­ing for fun­da­men­tal rights through so­cial ser­vice prac­tices, it co­op­er­ates with other civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tions. The cen­ter con­ducts ac­tiv­i­ties that are based on Tar­labaşı’s needs. Its main ac­tiv­i­ties in­volve ed­u­ca­tional and cre­ative arts. In terms of ed­u­ca­tional sup­port, with the help of vol­un­teer in­struc­tors, it of­fers af­ter­school tu­tor­ing for chil­dren, lan­guage lessons and spe­cial lessons in other fields, such as cre­ative drama. In ad­di­tion to these ed­u­ca­tional ac­tiv­i­ties, there are work­shops for chil­dren. This year, TTM vol­un­teers have led work­shops in ar­eas such as sculp­ture, sewing, re­cy­cling, map­ping, su­per­heroes, science and ev­ery­day life skills. The cen­ter also ben­e­fits from al­ter­na­tive and cre­ative ped­a­gogic ap­proaches in its ac­tiv­i­ties for chil­dren.

All the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s projects re­volve around the prin­ci­ples of hu­man rights, so­cial and gen­der equal­ity

The cen­ter con­ducts ac­tiv­i­ties that are based on Tar labaşı’s ned s. Its main ac­tiv­i­ties in­volve ed­u­ca­tional and cre­ative arts

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