Turkish students to take part in African aid projects
Turkey is sending 200 students to 18 African countries to take part in development and aid projects and develop a sense of volunteerism.
Under the 2017 Africa Experience Sharing Preparation Program, organized in cooperation with Turkish Airlines, the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), Anadolu Agency, Turkish Radio and Television (TRT) and nine NGOs, 200 students will visit 18 African countries from Aug. 5 to Aug. 30.
An event for the program was held Thursday in the Turkish capital, Anakra.
Speaking at the event, Deputy Prime Minister Hakan Cavusoglu said the students would take part in projects aimed at instilling a sense of volunteerism.
"By participating in various development and humanitarian aid projects, [they] will gain experience and develop a volunteering consciousness," said Cavusoglu.
The minister also said Turkey surpassed many developed countries by providing $6.2 billion in development aid in 2016, according to OECD data. In the last 10 years, Turkish development aid to African countries was around $3 billion, he added.
Serdar Cam, TIKA chairman, said the program would be beneficial for the students. "When they return, they will have more energy and motivation," Cam said.
Bilal Erdogan, deputy chairman of the Ilim Yayma Community Board of Trustees, said Turkish people regarded all suffering people of the world as their friends.
He said the students would gain first-hand experience helping the poor.
Turkish Airlines Chairman Ilker Ayci, TRT Director-General Ibrahim Eren, Anadolu Agency Director-General Senol Kazanci and Anadolu Agency Deputy General Director and Editor-In-Chief Metin Mutanoglu also participated in the event.