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Press Centre (3/2014)

Inclusive Approach is Fundamental in Disability Work


A workshop on ‘adolescents and youth with disabilities’ access to sports and physical activities in Turkey organized in Istanbul in March 18, 2014 by UNICEF and Turkish National Paralympics Committee. More than 80 representatives from Ministry of Family and Social Policies, local government, NGOs, universities, sports federations and disable sports clubs participated in the workshop.

İstanbul - A workshop on ‘adolescents and youth with disabilities’ access to sports and physical activities in Turkey organized in Istanbul in March 18, 2014 by UNICEF and Turkish National Paralympics Committee (NPC). More than 80 representatives from Ministry of Family and Social Policies, local government, NGOs, universities, sports federations and disable sports clubs participated in the workshop.

The Workshop started with a panel discussion with the participation of Mr. Abdullah Güven (Advisor, Ministry of Family and Social Policies), Elçin Er (Head of Disabled and Elderly Department, Ministry of Family and Social Policies), İbrahim Gümüşdal (General Secretary, NPC), Berrin Altınöz (Deputy General Secretary, NPC /TESYEV General Director), Assoc. Prof. Dr.  Yaşar Tatar (Marmara University and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nurettin Konar’ın (Istanbul University). 

Panel discussion started with Berrin Altınöz. She shared the three workshops that were held in pilot provinces of International Inspiration Project. Subsequent speaker İbrahim Gümüşdal underlined the latest approach regarding the disability in the World and said that integration is no longer the preferred term but “inclusion”. Next speaker Assoc. Prof. Yaşar Tatar, is a medical doctor with a specialty on disabled athletes and Paralympic sports. He gave a presentation about best practices and gave detailed information about the most common problems disabled athletes encounter. He also warned about malpractice in different occasions.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nurettin Konar was the second academician of the panel discussion and emphasized the importance of ‘inclusion’. He emphasised the importance of the concept of ‘togetherness’ and said that disabled and non-disabled children and youth should be able to practise sport and play together. Next speaker Elçin Er gave detailed information about the Ministry’s rights based policies. She also explained the on-going and upcoming collaborations between different ministries regarding issues about disability. The last speaker of the panel was the Ministry advisor Abdullah Güven. He shared details of legislative work in Turkey regarding disability. Mr. Güven also emphasized the recently adopted approach ‘inclusion’. 

The afternoon session of the workshop had group works and the sharing of the results of group Works. 

The participants created three groups and worked on the following subjects:
Disability and sports & physical activities
Disability and accessibility    
Disability and current regulations
Analysing conditions and current situation in the cities 

Results of the group Works will be shared on the NPC web site very soon (www.tmpk.org.tr) 
It is expected that this workshop to raise awareness at the institutional level and encourage a better integration of a rights-based and inclusive approach to programmes and services related to physical education and leisure. It will also strengthen the networking capacity of NPC to work closely with related public institutions and NGOs. 

UNICEF and NPC Collaboration 
As part of the International Inspiration Turkey (II), UNICEF and NPC brought their technical capacity and expertise together to raise the awareness about disability and the Paralympics. In the autumn three workshops were organized in Trabzon, Ankara and Mersin respectively. Local government representatives, officials from public institutions, NGOs, sports clubs and local media were invited.
During each workshop the identification of the problems in that city, complaints, observations, suggestions, recommendations and expectations were discussed. 
 
          
UNICEF Turkey Country Office, Yukarı Dikmen Mah. Alexsander Dubçek Cd. 7/106, 06450 Çankaya/Ankara. Telephone: +90 312 454 1000 Fax: +90 312 496 1461 E-mail: ankara@unicef.org