Turkish Youth and Education Service Foundation (TÜRGEV), a renowned charity focusing on education, marked their 20th anniversary yesterday in a ceremony in Istanbul attended by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
The charity, founded in 1996, credits Erdoğan as a major supporter during his tenure as mayor of Istanbul, where the foundation was initially based, and when it operated only one dormitory for students. Since then, education services have expanded to other cities and TÜRGEV currently runs 38 dormitories and five guesthouses in 18 provinces of Turkey, specifically catering to female students. Apart from dormitories, the foundation runs nursery and primary schools and set up a guesthouse for female students in the United States and United Kingdom.
Speaking at the event, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said he thanked the president and founders of TÜRGEV for their education services both in Turkey and abroad. "TÜRGEV was founded twenty years ago to help our youth based on our own values and it reached to a good point now, and by God's will it will expand its services more."
Erdoğan slammed a defamation campaign by Gülenists against TÜRGEV which has slandered the foundation's board member as well as the president's son, Bilal Erdoğan. "Defamation against me and my family was linked to this foundation. At the height of this campaign in 2014, I told the foundation's members to serve the people more, so that they would frustrate those who were disturbed by their presence." The president said he has always supported the foundation and will continue to do so.