GIVE A HAND
The Give A Hand Organization was founded in March 2015 when the volunteer project began by Hulya Kosematoglu and six of her classmates from the Hill School found support in Turkey and the U.S. The initial focus of the Give A Hand Organization has been on helping children and families who were the victims of the Syrian Civil War which has been ongoing since 2011, raising awareness about the unjust treatment of children, as well as changing the participants’ views on life.
In short, the Give A Hand Organization was created to bring together those who want to help and those who need help. The organization, which began with 10 volunteer students, has spread from the United States to Europe – today there are over 100 volunteers from all around the world. Currently, Give A Hand supports 80 Syrian refugee children and 50 Syrian refugee families.
The initial Give A Hand program was carried out with the support of Hasan Kalyoncu University in 2015 in Gaziantep. With an increase in demand from high school students, the scope of the programs widened, and in 2016 Give A Hand programs expanded to encompass Istanbul. By the end of 2016, Give A Hand was implementing two-week summer programs for high school students both in Istanbul and in Gaziantep. This expansion into Istanbul grew even further with the support of Istanbul Technical University in 2017.
In 2018, the Give A Hand Organization began a strategic alliance with NEYAD. NEYAD has been an active NGO since 1995 and has made a name for itself as one of Turkey’s most prominent non-governmental organization in regards to education. As a result of this partnership, the Give A Hand Organization acquired all the rights of a non-profit organization. Again in 2018 the Give A Hand Organization collaborated with the England based company Open Citadel. As part of this collaboration, Give A Hand gave its production rights to Open Citadel for them to create social impact based films during the summer programs. Through Open Citadel, the Give A Hand Organization reached more high school students in Europe.
The volunteers who attended the Istanbul program in 2018 got the opportunity to talk to Dr. Mehmet Güllüoğlu, the President of the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency of Turkey (AFAD) which is accepted to be the largest non-profit organization in the World. Dr. Güllüoğlu gave volunteers a presentation about Turkey’s politics concerning Syria and the extent of the Turkish aid. One of the biggest sources of pride for the Give A Hand Organization has been the close relationship and the support network between the organization and AFAD
GIVE A HAND
Through its founders, the Give A Hand Organization is working on collaborations with various universities in the U.S.