Life knows no obstacles

01 Jun 2009


Implementing workshops to support the participation and integration of the disabled and socially disadvantaged to social life, the Dreams Academy with its students and educators, attended the festival organised by the Beşiktaş Municipality in the scope of Disability Week.

New Horizons - At the festival in Ortaköy, students showcased their talents developed by the dance, rhythm and instrument workshops at the Academy. Seven hundred mentally disabled athletes from The Turkish Special Athletes Sports Federation were also present and received acclaim from a wide range of audiences. 

In her statement Vodafone Turkey Foundation’s chairman Rengin Onay noted that although a signatory of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; Turkey has yet to find solutions to improve the participation of the disabled who account for 12.5% of its population. Onay continued as follows:

“This situation has laid the path for the cooperation between Turkey Vodafone Foundation, the UNDP and the Alternative Life Association (AYDER) in starting the Dreams Academy Project. With the project implemented under the partnership of UNDP and the Alternative Life Association, we support the contribution of disabled and socially disadvantaged individuals to social life, in order to facilitate their access to information and encourage them to  take up a profession. Participants are trained by specialist educators in ten different workshops including rhythm, dance, drama, movie, photography, DJ music, instrument playing, painting, fashion design and dream design. 121 participants completed the workshops during the first training period. Currently, our workshops are continuing with 110 new participants. Most importantly, the Dreams Academy has taught us that dreams have no obstacles.” 

Developed under the partnership of UNDP and Alternative Life Association (AYDER) to support the disabled youth’s contribution to social life and to encourage employment, the Dreams Academy is funded by the Vodafone Turkey Foundation. The trainings at the Academy are organised in places designated by the Beşiktaş Municipality.

For detailed information about the Academy please visit