The Educational Volunteers Foundation of Turkey (TEGV) was founded on January 23, 1995 by a group of businessmen, directors and academicians, led by Suna Kıraç, in order to “support the primary education provided by the government.”
TEGV was founded by a 55-member board of trustees who believe that the main reason for some of the major issues that our country is facing right now is lack of education, and that it wouldn’t be possible to reach the level of contemporary civilization without improving this. The main objective of the board of trustees is to serve education.
TEGV is focused on providing “out-of-school education” support to elementary level students. Over the years, TEGV became the foremost non-governmental organization in its field of activity. In 2009, TEGV was announced by the National Assembly as one of the foundations allowed to organize charity collection without prior permission.
TEGV in 24 YEARS
TEGV was founded on January 23, 1995 by a 55-member board of trustees. The first chairman of the foundation was Yılmaz Büyükerşen. On September 1, 1995, a computer supported education center and the first Education Unit were established. The Academy of Volunteers was also created in the same year.
TEGV’s first Educational Park was opened in Fındıkzade by President Süleyman Demirel. The “Contemporary Textbooks” project was started. Work by the foundation was shared with the public through a communication campaign called “Don’t Get Angry with Darkness, Light a Candle”.
The first Ministry of Education approved TEGV books “I Start to Read”, Social Studies 1-2, and Turkish 1-2-3 were published. The Summer Schools program began.
Former US Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance visited TEGV activity centers. Under the sponsorship of the newspaper Milliyet, and the support of some elite artists, a series of concerts were organized called “We’re Singing the East”. The profit was put towards educational units in Southeast Anatolia. TEGV was nominated as the most successful NGO by Dünya newspaper.
“The Life Project” and “The Hope Bus” project were implemented in order to help citizens in need after the Marmara Earthquake in August 1999. The first “Telethon” campaign was run and new activity centers were opened.
The “Basketball Volunteers” project was kicked off in cooperation with Tofaş. The first monthly “Volunteer Night for Motivation” was held. The first Mobile Firefly Learning Unit started to operate in Kastamonu. The number of activity centers was pushed up to 56.
The 23-hour “Telethon” charity campaign was held between and April 21-23. The “Anatolian Summer Volunteers” program started. Football player Mehmet Özdilek (a.k.a. Şifo) donated the earnings from his testimonial match to TEGV. The Directorate General of Foundations rewarded TEGV as the “Most Successful Foundation” of the year. Activities continued in order to create sponsorship deals and new programs.
A second “Telethon” was broadcast for “One Million Children”. This was the debut of SMS donations. “The End of Year Show of the Class of Stars” TV program was a big hit thanks to numerous artists and businessmen. Educational programs were grouped under five main titles within the rich learning environment. TEGV received the “NGO of the year Award”.
The April 23 “Telethon” campaign was held once more. Under the sponsorship of Nokia, and in cooperation with IYF (International Youth Foundation), the “Dreams Workshop” project was the first international educational project. A Tent Educational Unit was set up after the earthquake in Bingöl. TEGV started to celebrate December 5, World Volunteers Day. Doğan Media Group became the foundation’s communication sponsor. TEGV started to work together with Social Centers in order to reach children outside the educational units.
Sponsored Educational Programs were initiated. Another “Telethon” was held from April 23 to May 1. As part of the fifth Telethon campaign, a joint “Education Volunteers” program was broadcast on 9 different TV channels simultaneously. The International Youth Federation awarded the “Overachievement” prize to TEGV. Three new projects were implemented; “I can be Fed” with Nestle, “Young Innovators” with Eczacıbaşı, and “Harmony in Education” with Arçelik.
The International “Soul of My Brand” Conference was held under the sponsorship of some of the leading brands of Turkey in order to enhance corporate social responsibility, as well as consolidate the connections between NGOs. Volunteer Nights of Motivation were held in Van, Diyarbakır and Izmir, as well as Istanbul and Ankara. A support program for social activities was signed with The Ministry of Education. A “Sports Through Games” project was implemented with Kraft, and a “Savings” project with Citigroup. Number of children reached: 694,368
TEGV children won the First Lego League Tournament. Suna Kıraç, our founder and honorary president, donated the proceeds from her book “I Have Ideals Longer than My Life.” The City Representative application was put into action in preparation for widespread propagation. The First International Conference was held on December 5. “I Read I Play” with Yapı Kredi, and “Colorful Horizons” with Visa Europe, were implemented.
TEGV started to educate volunteers thorough local instructors. A new program was initiated for the Fireflies. The NBA supported TEGV. Sezen Aksu, Nilüfer and Ajda Pekkan shared the stage for “A Child Changes, The World Changes”. The United Nations Global Compact engagement was signed. Education Volunteers in 81 provinces.
The April 23 Telethon campaign raised record donations. Street Theater shows were organized through the “I Read I Play” project. TEGV projects were represented at an REM concert. A “Youth, Volunteering and Social Capital” survey was conducted. Projects called “Knowledge is My Business” with Avea, and “Young Jerseys” with Migros were put into action. Nirun Şahingiray, a board member who had supported TEGV since day one, sadly passed away. He donated most of his wealth to TEGV, and will always be remembered fondly.
TEGV was announced as one of the foundations allowed to organize charity collection without prior permission by the National Assembly. The number of Fireflies went up to 19. A conference based on the second national survey, “Lifelong Volunteering and Its Benefits”, was organized on December 5, International Volunteers Day. The “Our Home Istanbul” project took off. A themed night, “You Have Never Seen Them Like This”, took place. The Adım Adım (Step by Step) Initiative supported TEGV. An April 23 campaign was held for an entire month.
TEGV won the Golden Compass Prize during the Public Relations Awards organized by the Turkish Public Relations Association for the “You Have Never Seen Them Like This” project. A new record was set with a promised donation of 4.7 million Turkish Liras during the live stream of the Beyaz Show. The first thematic Firefly Culture Truck took off within the scope of the European Capital of Culture Agency during Istanbul’s year as the European Capital of Culture. The first thematic web page, Our Home Istanbul, was established. TEGV celebrated its 15th anniversary.
The Sevgi-Erdoğan Gönül Educational Park was built in Şanlıurfa. 9 Fireflies were sent to the region after the earthquake in Van. TEGV activities were taken to the settlements where seasonal workers live thanks to the Fireflies. TEGV participated in the Hürriyet Train. The 6th International Volunteers Day was organized. Unilever started the project “Enjoy, Learn, Hygiene”. A TEGV program, Our Home Istanbul, was included in the educational curriculum of the Ministry of Education for the first time.
TEGV was accredited to the European Volunteer Services Program and started to send volunteers. The Education Truck that took off from Istanbul to Macedonia and Kosovo introduced TEGV’s educational programs to the children of Skopje for 6 months. Over the following 6 months, the Educational Truck was active in Prizren. The number of Fireflies, which covered 112,214 kilometers, and reached 720,098 children, was now 23 units.
The “Good Life Education Program” with Kipa and the “Bernard Van Leer Firefly” program were kicked off. Local volunteer gatherings were held. Chatter, TEGV’s communication platform, became active. “Support Workshops for Volunteers” were started as part of the Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education grant and the European Union Financial Aid Program. Thanks to Mercedes-Benz Türk, the new MobilKids Traffic Firefly was added to the fleet.
With the support of the Istanbul Development Agency, the Dream Traveler Firefly set out on the road to introduce primary level children to plastic arts. TEGV became a member of the executive board of UGK (National Volunteers’ Foundation), a strategic advisory body that supports recognition, reinforcement and conventionalization of volunteering. TEGV was included in the Harvard University curriculum. Celebrating the centenary of Turkish Cinema, TEGV organized a Movies Through Songs concert, with soundtracks of unforgettable Yeşilçam movies performed by the actors and actresses from these movies.
TEGV celebrated its 21st anniversary. The Science Firefly started to operate. Kanal D made a special broadcast on December 20.
The TEGV Corporate Governance Association was recognized nationally and internationally in 2016 with awards presented by Sabancı University, Vefa High School and Global Compact.
With innovative works such as Verbal History and a brand new website, we are catching up with the times.
The whole of Turkey is talking about TEGV’s new campaign, “Have You Ever Asked Me?”, on the streets, in newspapers and magazines, on television, at cinemas, in shopping malls, on buses, at airports and on social media.
TEGV launched algodijital.com with Google.org, a new IT project that aims to introduce children to coding and develop their basic digital skills. TEGV volunteer and donor Ahmet Uysal was the first Turkish to run a marathon in the poles.
Our 39th Activity Location, Tekirdağ Fibria Learning Unit opened its doors to TEGV children. Design and Skill Workshop was initially come in to action.Ahmet Uysal make a history with his charity run 1645 km from Artvin to Köyceğiz for TEGV children with the project titled “Run To Education”. TEGV 2021 Strategy Studies was completed with the participation of all employees.
TEGV attends European Parliement in Brussels for “Faces of Turkey” Exhibition
TEGV celebrates its 24th Year with “Children’s Hopes Change at TEGV” campaign
Contact-free donation kiosks are activated; Maker Labs continue to be open. A total of 11 Maker Labs get started Pedal for Hope Team ride from Mardin to Göbeklitepe in order to collect donations.
TEGV organizes A June Night Dream Concert. English Education Program starts in cooperation with Cambridge University Press First Integrated Activity Report is published. It receives Second Place ar ARC Awards and receives an Honorary Award for its design.