Before Oprah: Scholar’s Philanthropic Work Has Huge Impact on Africa

Upper part: a Gulen-inspired school; Lower part: Oprah's Leadership Academy
Upper part: a Gulen-inspired school; Lower part: Oprah's Leadership Academy


Date posted: September 12, 2013

Dr. Lachin Hatemi

Centuries of colonization, slavery and diseases ravaged the sub-Saharan Africa. The entire continent was left with a desperate need for an educated and skilled workforce, which can transform the economy and improve the daily lives of Africans. Education is the key to such a transformation and ending poverty in Africa. What are we doing to educate the African youth?

Oprah Winfrey had some recent media coverage for her school for girls in South Africa (Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls), where under-privileged girls can receive world-class education. Successful students from poor families are admitted after an intense application process in which Oprah is personally involved. Oprah visits her school in South Africa regularly to counsel and encourage her students. Some of these girls were able to get accepted into American universities with Oprah Winfrey’s support, which would not be possible otherwise.

This charitable activity from Oprah is very admirable, but she is hardly alone in her mission. A well-respected Turkish scholar, Mr. Fethullah Gulen, who currently resides in Pennsylvania, inspired legions of Turkish volunteers to establish schools in many Sub-Saharan African countries over the last two decades. These secular schools provide education from nursery school to high school with greater emphasis on math and science education. Many graduates of these schools can easily proceed to prestigious American and European universities for their future education.

For starters, this movement, also called Hizmet, is a loosely connected group of individuals and NGO’s inspired by the ideas and ideals of Fethullah Gülen – a Turkish Muslim scholar and thinker. The movement’s activities span some 140 or so countries occupying an important place in the field of education, intercultural dialogue, healthcare, and relief activities. The major emphasis is a selfless approach to serving others and providing education to people in need.

Mr. Gulen’s movement signals the start of a new era of world-class secular education and self-empowerment in the poorest African countries. Many graduates of these schools proceed to become teachers in their alma maters. Gulen’s schools in Africa are the best antidote to the extremism and civil war which threatens the future of many African nations.

Other philanthropists should also follow the example of Oprah and Gulen by providing an education and a better future for the African youth and their integration into the global work force.

Lachin Hatemi is a physician located in Buffalo, New York. His interests include human rights, racial equality and interfaith dialogue. You can reach Dr. Hatemi at [email protected]

Source: Your Black World , September 2013


Related News

Gülen appeals for steadfastness against gov’t ban on prep schools [in Turkey]

Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen has asked his followers to be resolute and not yield to despair in the face of a government attempt to shut down private educational institutions [in Turkey] that assist students to prepare for high school and university admission examinations, which was interpreted as a major blow to the right to an education and to free enterprise in the EU-candidate country.

Mothers, fathers crying and praying due to extensive victimization

Mothers cried out and made objections wherever state brutality was observed. This noble and peaceful attitude was not only displayed at the education institutions affiliated with the Hizmet movement.

‘Turkish schools in Nigeria are not owned by government of Turkey’

Cemal Yigit is a member of Hizmet Movement, founder of the Nigerian Turkish International Colleges (NTIC). In this interview, he reacts to the recent declaration by the Turkish President that he would push for the close down all Turkish schools outside Turkey.

Mandela supported mosque construction in Johannesburg, says businessman

Turkish businessman Ali Katırcıoğlu, who sponsored the construction of an Ottoman-style mosque complex, called the Nizamiye Külliyesi, in the South African city of Johannesburg, has said legendary South African leader Nelson Mandela, who passed away earlier this month, extended great support to the construction of the mosque complex.

PM Erdoğan calls on his supporters to boycott [Hizmet’s] prep schools

Calling on his supporters to boycott prep schools, Erdoğan took another swipe at the Hizmet movement, which, according to him, pulled the trigger of the recent corruption operation.However, lawyer of Fethullah Gülen denied any involvement in the recent graft probe, strongly rejected any link to the case.

Graduation ceremony held in Turkish schools in Senegal

Turkish schools Yavuz Selim Educational Institutions are known with their qualified education in Senegal. Turkish schools opened by entrepreneurs affiliated with Hizmet Movement held a graduation ceremony for the students on their 11th academic year in Dakar.

Latest News

Fethullah Gülen’s Condolence Message for South African Human Rights Defender Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Hizmet Movement Declares Core Values with Unified Voice

Ankara systematically tortures supporters of Gülen movement, Kurds, Turkey Tribunal rapporteurs say

Erdogan possessed by Pharaoh, Herod, Hitler spirits?

Devious Use of International Organizations to Persecute Dissidents Abroad: The Erdogan Case

A “Controlled Coup”: Erdogan’s Contribution to the Autocrats’ Playbook

Why is Turkey’s Erdogan persecuting the Gulen movement?

Purge-victim man sent back to prison over Gulen links despite stage 4 cancer diagnosis

University refuses admission to woman jailed over Gülen links

In Case You Missed It

Couple offering wedding feast to Syrian refugees surprised by feedback

US says first batch of docs does not constitute extradition request for Gülen

Fethullah Gulen — His Vision, Our Response

Nigeria says asked by Turkey to extradite over 1000 people

False reports on Bank Asya breach laws

Could assassination attempts be made against politicians?

Egyptian scholar Muhammad Imara: Hira Magazine building bridges in Islamic world

Copyright 2022 Hizmet News