Anglo-Turkish Society

  • image courtesy of Bora Ates
  • image courtesy of Bora Ates
  • image courtesy of Hale Uslu

Charity work

The Society usually generates a small annual surplus of income over routine expenditure and holds modest reserves. When finances allow, it contributes to Anglo-Turkish charitable causes. In response to the 1999 earthquake disaster in Turkey, the Society made a substantial donation to the relief fund established by the Turkish Ambassador and went on to raise a Scholarships Fund to support children in secondary education who had lost parents and/or homes. The Society's annual level of donations is currently (2009) £7,000 p.a. but is likely to reduce sharply as the its reserves are depleted.

The Scholarships Fund dispersed some £65,000 over the course of five years to help students at seven separate schools with tuition and maintenance costs. Follow-up contributions have been made to assist one of the students in further education. And the profits of the Turkish cookery book edited by Society member Sally Mustoe were channelled to earthquake victims via the Lions Club of Turkey.

Modest donations, including money to equip a pets' corner, have been made to Yedi Pınar, the children's charity at Adana modelled on the eponymous Seven Springs at Cheltenham.

Grants varying between £1,000 and £2,000 have been made each year since 2003 to the Kerkenes Dağı project on an important Iron Age site at Yozgat, headed by a British archaeologist from Ankara's Middle East Technical University, with substantial input by Turkish scholars and students. The project is currently the recipient of the annual Bernard & Ines Burrows Memorial Award, named after the founding Chairman of the Society and his wife.

A total of £3,000 has, in 2008/09 been granted to BİKEV, which provides residence facilities at Balıkesir to girls who would otherwise have to forego secondary education. Its new dormitory is to be named for the Anglo-Turkish Society!

Smaller contributions have, over the past five years, gone to causes as diverse as the RA's exhibition The Turks: a journey of 1000 years, a development scheme at Reşadiye in central Turkey and an exhibition of Turkish artists' work in Birmingham.