When Behlul Basaran arrived Nigeria in 2000 from Turkey, he was armed with a single piece of luggage, an enthusiastic spirit and hope. Inside his luggage was his letter of scholarship for a university education from the Hizmet Movement, which had started building a relationship and foundation for quality education with Nigeria.
Even with reports of terror threats in Davao City, a Filipino-Turkish educational group pursued their beef-sharing event on Monday, September 12, to celebrate peace and unity in the city. “This event crosses religions and cultures, it is for all to celebrate common understanding,” said ICAD Foundation representative Mustafa Gun.
As part of their Hunger Relief program, Embrace Relief administers qurban organizations all over the world to bring joy to the table of people in need, while helping Muslims take care of their religious obligations. In 2015, qurban donations have been distributed amongst countries such as Bangladesh, Haiti, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Madagascar, Mexico, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, and the United States. This year, qurban donations will be distributed to those in need in the United States, Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
In several cases, Turkey has offered to run the seized institutions, although it is expected to face legal challenges. Kimse Yok Mu, which had more than 200,000 volunteers in 100 countries before being forcibly closed after the coup attempt, is understood to be preparing to take the decision to international courts. Joshua Hendrick, an expert on the Gulen movement said Ankara faced a big challenge when it came to stepping into the shoes of its former allies.
In the immediate aftermath of the Turkish military’s attempted coup on July 15, the international community responded with relief. While many people within Turkey and outside of it are no fans of Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s authoritarian regime, the bloodshed and chaos that would have resulted from a government overthrow seemed like the worse of two options.
The Nigerian Turkish International College NTIC has constructed over 90 hand pumps and electric motorized boreholes in many villages, hamlets and schools within Kaduna state in Nigeria the last four years of its existence. Davud Sagir, the director for the college in Kaduna says that it is not only part of their corporate social responsibility, but their duty to provide assistance in education, medicare, and charitable causes in the society.
For Muslims, myself included, the inspiration to serve humanity through education is coming from Hizmet philosophy which states ‘Serve human beings irrespective of differences in colour, race, ethnicity or nationality, in order to please the creator’. Otherwise, it can be rephrased to read ‘Serve the Created, in order to please the Creator’.
This blatant display of force demonstrates how far Turkey’s increasingly autocratic President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will go to solidify his power and pursue his vendetta against the adversary he fears most: the moderate Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, whose columns were published by Zaman.
Kimse Yok Mu Foundation, which has been running humanitarian aid project globally, particularly in the African Continent, continues to support the orphanage in the capital city N’Djamena in Chad. At a joint event with Chad Itimad Turkish Foundation, The Fahrettin Bulut Orphanage, home to a large number of orphans, received one year of food supply.
A Turkish political, non-governmental, civil society organisation, Hizmet Movement, has made commendable contributions in Nigeria’s socio-economic life. The movement, which began in the late 1960s, particularly focuses on education, charity and dialogue, which it believes are the remedies to ignorance, poverty and disunity.
Local governments working with volunteers from religious groups and private business in Virginia delivered more than 72 tons of coats and blankets this winter to Syrian refugees in Turkey. The Northern Virginia Regional Commission, made up of 14 local governments in the Washington, DC suburbs, has been coordinating the coat and blanket drive for each of the last three winters.