Arts and Charity for Better Social Cohesion on Both Sides of the Bosphorus

Arts and charity for a better social cohesion on both sides of the Bosporus” is a KA-104 Erasmus+ Project of Values, Virtues, Integrity” Foundation (VVIF), implemented in partnership with the Adult Education Center in Selchuk / Izmir, Turkey. The project  overall goal is to improve the foundation's capacity to provide services in the field of collective creative processes for its diverse consumers – both domestically and internationally - and to seek new horizons in the field of charity development, as a natural complement to making socially engaged collective art.

The specific objectives of the project are :

-to provide opportunities for diversifying the creative portfolio of the organization by enhancing the creative competencies of key team members performing group creative processes for the social inclusion of vulnerable groups;

-to develop the profile of the Foundation as a proactive and recognizable with its know-how organization on an international scale;

- to expand the organization's international co-operation capabilities.

 

The project consists of 4 staff mobility activities within two years as follows:

  1. Initial three-day JOB SHADOWING VISIT in 2019;
  2. Five-day STRUCTURED COURSE / TRAINING 1 on "Turkish Ancient Ebru Art" in 2020;
  3. Five-day STRUCTURED COURSE / TRAINING 2 on "The Art of Creating Amigurumi Dolls" in 2020;
  4. Final three-day TRAINING/TEACHING ENGAGEMENT ABROAD in 2020.

 

The initial JOB SHADOIWNG VISIT was held in the period September 23-25, 2019. The foundation’s Director and Chairperson visited the Adult Education Center in Selçuk, Turkey, where they met with the management of the host organization and specified the tasks and the mutual commitments to the project. The guests from the Bulgarian side got acquainted with the experience of the Turkish partner in planning and organizing charity events and observed various art activities offered by the Turkish educational institution. In addition to demonstrating Ebru and Amigurumi practices (for which specific training of the Bulgarian participants in the project is forthcoming), the guests had the opportunity to participate in creative workshops for jewelry, painting, embroidery and artistic textiles.

 

A stopover to the local authorities was organized during the visit, where a meeting with the Deputy Mayors for Education and Culture was held. The Bulgarian representatives also entered a training course for migrants from Syria, taking place in the municipality building. The cultural program included visits to the Ephesus Museum, located in Selcuk, and the statue of the Virgin Mary close to the ancient city. The job shadowing visit gave a promising start to the project activities and future joint actions and initiatives were also planned.

Between September 29 and October 2, 2020, four staff members of the VVI Foundation participated in a structured five-day training course " The Ancient Turkish Art Ebru" at the Selcuk Center for Adult Education under the project "Arts and Charity for Better Social Cohesion on Both Sides of the Bosphorus" . The program of the course included a history of the ancient Turkish art of ebru, as well as numerous creative workshops to improve the basic techniques and creative space for applying ebru on textiles and clay figures. All participants received Europass certificates.

 

Between 12 and 16 October 2020, four members of the VVI Foundation team participated in a structured course "The Art of Making Amigurumi Dolls" at the Center for Adult Education in Selcuk, Turkey. All participants received Europass certificates.

At the end of the project, it was the turn of the VVI Foundation team to train the staff of the Center for Adult Education in Selcuk on the main collective creative processes that we apply at the local level. Art facilitators Ralitsa Rumenova and Bistra Trupcheva conducted a three-day training at the center, which included: finger painting techniques, wool techniques and silk scarf painting.

 

The participants in the training created many works of art, which were shown at an exhibition of the Center for Adult Education in the town of Selcuk in May 2021.

The partnership between the two organizations continues after the end of this project. Four people from the team of the center will take part in the coordinated by VVIF training course "Art is for All", which will be held in early September 2021 in Samokov.