- Turkey Hits Its Shot
- Shades Of Turkey In China
- Let The Festivals Begin!
- Let The Roses Bloom
- Defterdarburnu As It Once Was
- Second Stop: Clay
- Art In Elazığ
- Classical Music On The Golden Horn
- Munich Loves You
- Forever Young, May 19
- Sultan Of Land And Sea
- The Work Of The Waqfs
- The World Is Speaking Turkish!
- Straddling Two Continents
- The Film Is About To Begin!
- Exhibitions Worth Seeing
- Hot Shopping In The North
- Redbud Time In Istanbul
- White Legacy In The Aegean
- The Conjunction Of Three Continents
- Romans Of Everyday Life
- A Master Remembered
- Shadow Of Istanbul Falls On Luxembourg
- Semih Sayginer’s Ho Chi Minh City
- A Legend That Came From The Sea
- Be A World Local
- Africa In Five Questions
The Work Of The Waqfs
A drink of cold water on a hot day, a rest stop for weary travelers, a shelter for birds… The foundation, there when you need it, giving without thought of return…
‘Waqf’ in Arabic (vakıf in Turkish) means social assistance offered by a person of means, and it has left its stamp over a wide swath of territory from Andalusia to Indonesia, from Central Asia to South Africa. Institutionalized in Islamic civilization, waqf culture reached its zenith under the Ottomans. Touching every area of life from city planning and the environment to health and education through its charitable foundations, the Ottoman Empire was the quintessential waqf civilization.
Turkey’s General Directorate of Foundations keeps that culture alive today, celebrating Waqf Week every year in the second week of May. The opening ceremony of Waqf Week this year, based on the concept of Waqf Civilization and City Planning, will take place at the Turkish Parliament under the auspices of Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç. Waqf Week promises to be a week of events focusing on how foundations have been reflected in city planning.
In a virtual competition to do good, a number of interesting foundations were set up under the Ottomans. Here are some of the aims they espoused:
Taking school pupils on picnics
Helping impoverished young people to get married
Providing students with money to buy shoes
Distributing cold water on hot summer days
Caring for the sick in their homes
Planting willow trees on river banks
Assisting bankrupt merchants
Bringing people fresh air at a mansion on the Bosphorus
For more information about waqf week events: www.vgm.gov.tr