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Learning for Heritage Conservation

The Foundation is committed to deepening societal understanding of the nation’s heritage and offers a variety of educational programs emphasizing heritage preservation for future generations, the development of people’s sense of community, and the quality of the local environment in both town and country. Programs for the public, especially children and young people are designed to raise awareness concerning environmental and cultural issues, to initiate a sense of joint ‘responsibility’ and encourage organizing for possible solutions.

Seminars, discussions, conferences and trips are organized locally and nationally with ÇEKÜL representatives, universities, local administrations, local NGOs, and other related local and national institutions. Periodic environmental education programs for primary school children are carried out. On-site Summer Schools are also held annually in historic towns for college students of architecture, art and archeology. ÇEKÜL Academy offers regular training programs for the technical staff of local governments, who are responsible from conservation projects.

The Towns Belong to the Children Heritage Education Program was introduced in 2003 to develop an understanding and appreciation of heritage in the young generation. Designed as an experiential learning model for 12-year-olds, the program aims to enhance a sense of identity, an awareness of local history and their tangible/intangible cultural heritage. The UNESCO funded project aimed to acquaint the new generations with the local cultural characteristics and history of the cities where they live. In the meantime the educational program is standardized to be used by teachers in formal education as well. Towns Belong to the Children was followed by several others, namely Cultural Envoys, Historical Buildings Tell the Story of Istanbul, Trees Tell the Story of Istanbul, City Museums Program, Fruits and Vegetables on Season.