Help Syrian refugees in Turkey – Small Projects Istanbul

A Time for Giving: Practical help for Syrians living in Istanbul

IMG_2490Now that the festive season is over, the tree and the tinsel taken down and the debris of wrapping paper cleared away, we can get back to normal life. However for the estimated 2.2 million Syrians living in Turkey, normal life is a far cry from our home comforts. Many of them had to leave not only their homes and loved ones, but their schools, universities and colleges. For the parents of school age children, and young adults with unfinished degrees, the worry is as much about their future as about their homeland.

Small Projects Istanbul (SPI) is an NGO founded by Australian Karyn Thomas and co-directed with Shannon Kay, who also works on placing children in schools. Along with Communications Manager Anna Tuscon and Siba Alaradi in Community Liaison, these women and a team of volunteers provide aide to Syrians living alone or with their families in Istanbul. A major aim of SPI is to help Syrian refugees in Turkey access education in Istanbul and elsewhere. However, even when they are able to continue their studies, they lack the basic resources many of us take for granted.

This is where you come in. If there was a new laptop or tablet under the Christmas tree for you, why not consider donating the old one to a displaced Syrian and help them further their education? Whether you live in Istanbul or have friends and family coming over to visit you and to go sightseeing, please see if you or they can help Syrian refugees in Turkey by making a donation.

Some important points to remember

• Only donate laptops and tablets that are in good working condition. If you can’t use an electronic device because it’s faulty, too slow or too old, a Syrian won’t be able to make use of it either.
• Make sure you don’t leave any personal data behind on the hard drive. If you’re unsure how to clear your computer hard drive, ask at your public library or community centre for help. Alternatively ask your local computer repair person. They’ll likely help you if you tell them it’s for charity.
• It’s a good idea to clear the internet browsing history too.
• It would be great if any programs already loaded such as Excel, Word etc are left on the computer.
• In addition, please provide an adaptor so the computer can be used in Turkey. If you bought your computer in Australia you can buy such as the one pictured below for under AUD$10.

Adaptor 1 Adaptor 2

• If you’re bringing a laptop or tablet from a country other than Australia please check the voltage compatibility with Turkish requirements.
• Alternatively, if you have the time, you can take the device you plan to give to an electronics accessory shop in Istanbul (Kadıköy and Karaköy are both good centres for this) and buy a new cord (and/or transformer) for the computer.

IMG_2634 Make sure you plug it in and test it so you know it works with your particular device.

If you’d like to help Syrians refugees in Turkey please give an electronic device to a Syrian living in Istanbul. You can get in touch with me via the contact form on my website. Even if you don’t have a laptop or tablet to donate, Small Projects Istanbul regularly have new projects on the go so financial contributions are always welcome. They can be made through their secure site here.

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About Goreme1990

I’m Lisa Morrow, the person behind I was born in Sydney, Australia and grew up a leafy middle class North Shore suburb. After finishing high school I went to Sydney University but failed to find my niche. After working as a public servant, cleaner, sales assistant, waitress, bar maid and car counter, I went overseas. Once there I hitchhiked through the UK, travelled in Europe and arrived in Turkey just as the Gulf War was starting. My three months stay in the small central Anatolian village of Göreme changed my life. On my return to Australia I earned a BA Honours Degree in Sociology from Macquarie University. An academic career beckoned but the call to travel was louder. After several false starts I moved to Turkey and lived there for ten years. In 2017 I moved to Lisbon, Portugal, but continue to travel regularly to Istanbul. In addition to my blog I've written a travel narrative memoir called "Waiting for the Tulips to Bloom: Adrift in Istanbul" and two collections of essays, "Inside Out In Istanbul: Making Sense of the City" and "Exploring Turkish Landscapes: Crossing Inner Boundaries". I have a regular segment on San Francisco Turkish radio and in early 2017 I released an audio walking tour called "Stepping back through Chalcedon: Kadikoy Walk", through VoiceMap. In addition I write for various international and Australian magazines and websites, as well as for this blog. A full list of my published articles, with links, can be found on the Writing on Turkey and Writing Beyond Turkey pages.
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8 Responses to Help Syrian refugees in Turkey – Small Projects Istanbul

  1. Nara says:

    Thank you for kind heart and good deeds. I am Syrian too. And we are facing a lot of difficulties in Turkey. So we really need help. But the best help will be job chances. I hope to find something like that. Thank you. Can i help you by something? If yes I will be glad. By the way I am English teacher and translator. And I know 5 languages. If I cn be any help I will be glad. Thank you.

    • Goreme1990 says:

      Thank you for your offer of help Nara. I hope you find work and can improve your life while you are in Istanbul. I hope you can one day return to a peaceful and prosperous Syria.

      • Davut says:

        I encountered many qualified Syrian refugees on the TV. A professional basketball player, teachers and even a professor. Actually, in Türkiye we need these kind of people. Maybe the numbers of refugees are too high and it’s unmanageable. Social organizations should support this management. Thanks for contributing this.

        The worst thing is one young generation ,”Children of the war”, are grown up without a regular education. When you consider Education as an underlying reason of this wars it becomes utterly serious. So, your small touches at this issue can change the world.

        I hope the same for Syria.

        • Nara says:

          Thank you for good wishes and intentions, but Syrians now , who lives in Turkey they are in need of other thing than simple help. Most of them they need job and legal papers. The rest they will do by themselves. They will survive. I can talk from my side I have diploma in English language and Literature. I have many years experience , I know 5 languages I have master degree in International Relations, but imagine what, I can’t find job. Most of them don’t agree to give me job because one or the other reason. The same I can tell for mu husband, he is computer engineer , he knows 3 languages but again no one takes him to job, again for different reason like papers, language and so on. Now tell me what shall I or people like me do to survive. There is nice proverb don’t help by giving fish. Help by teaching how to fish. But anyway thank you for trying and doing. And again if my husband and I can be of help, we will be happy.
          Good luck to you and best wishes.

        • Goreme1990 says:

          Hi Nara,
          I will write you a longer answer tomorrow, but please read Davut’s comment. He is a former student of mine and a good man. Maybe he can help your husband get a job.

          • Nara says:

            Thank you very much, Good luck in every effort what your team and you do. And I hope to be able to help you with anything for your kind heart and eagerness to help.
            Thank you.

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