Philanthropy and Youth (2023)

About The Event

The Sabancı Foundation’s International Philanthropy Seminars that have been bringing civil society, academia, private and public sector representatives together with international experts, held with the title of “Philanthropy and Youth” in its 16th year. The event took place in Sabancı Center, İstanbul on 5 December 2023, between 09.30 – 13.00 (GMT+3).

“How can we increase meaningful youth participation in philanthropy?”, “What are some successful examples?”, “How can foundations integrate a youth perspective into their work?”, “What are the expectations of young generations from NGOs and philanthropic organizations?” The seminar opened space for discussing these questions together.

Date: 5 December 2023, Tuesday, 09.30-13.00 (GMT +3)
Location: Sabancı Center

9.30 – 10.00 Welcoming and Registration

10.00 – 10.30
Performanca: Cemal Yön ve İbragim Orazov
Opening Speech: Güler Sabancı, Sabancı Foundation Chair of Board of Trustees
Keynote Speech: Nasra Ayub, Activist and Writer

10.30 – 12.00 Panels

Panel 1: Youth Engagement in Philanthropy: Effective Strategies
Moderator: Duygu Demirdağ, Journalist

Ayşe Kırımlı, General Manager, Community Volunteers Foundation
Heather Hamilton, Executive Director, Elevate Children Funder's Group
Maria Cova Orejas, Board Member, Learning for Well-being Foundation

Panel 2: Philanthropy Through the Youth Experience
Moderator: Ela Serpil Evliyaoğlu, Programs Director, Youth Organizations Forum

Aksa Ali, Board Member, Learning for Well-being Foundation
Bahar Yavuz, Disability Rights Activist
Emre İpekyüz, Borad Member, Community Volunteers Foundation
Seren Anaçoğlu, Climate Activist

12.00 – 13.00 Lunch and Networking
13.00 – 14.00: Liseliler Arası Duyarlıyım Ödülü Lansmanı

Click here to watch the recording of the event on YouTube.

Keynote Speaker

Nasra Ayub

Nasra Ayub is a multi-award-winning women and girl’s rights campaigner, TEDx speaker and writer from UK. She has been campaigning and delivering outreach work since the age of 15, nationally and globally addressing sexual violence, racism and Islamophobia. She works in Programs at Global Fund for Children focusing on the youth-led participatory grant making streams, most notably the youth-led program Spark Fund. Nasra is also a freelance journalist raising awareness on topics such as ending violence against women and girls and racial and social inequalities.


Ayşe Kırımlı

Ayşe Kırımlı has been the General Manager of the Community Volunteers Foundation Since 2021. She previously served in senior positions in the sales and marketing sector for over 25 years in various private companies such as Shell, Demirören Media, Garanti Payment. She has also been a part of boards of directors or served as a mentor in various civil society organizations such as Anadolu Foundation, TÜHİD, and IWF Turkey. Providing voluntary career coaching to university students since 2011, Ayşe Kırımlı holds an ICF professional coaching certificate.

Heather Hamilton

Heather Hamilton joined Elevate Children Funders Group as Executive Director in 2020 and she brings more than 25 years’ social change leadership experience to the position. She most recently served as Deputy Executive Director and Interim Executive Director at Girls Not Brides, a global partnership of more than 1,200 organizations in over 95 countries working to end child marriage and achieve gender equality. Previously, she worked at the UNICEF Asia-Pacific Regional Office on the Public Finance for Children Initiative.

Maria Cova Orejas

Maria Cova Orejas is a board member of the Learning for the wellbeing Foundation. The L4WBF develop and implements programs for children, parents and professionals. In her career she has worked for private companies as well as public institutions before starting her journey serving on philanthropic infrastructure for the past 15 years. A former Director at the Evens Foundation, she also served as Policy & Programmes Director and a key member of the Leadership Team at the European Foundation Centre. Elected as Expert on social economy by the EU, she has served as Board member of Social Economy Europe.

Aksa Ali

Aksa Ali has seven years of experience with European organisations as a child’s rights activist. She has worked closely with Young Scot, Scotland’s national youth information charity and served as a board member to promote intergenerational collaboration and race equality. As a young Scottish-Pakistani woman, she has a great passion for increasing awareness on ethnic-minorty struggles and campaigning for young people of colour. She has continued on her work with the Learning for Wellbeing Foundation as a board member.

Bahar Yavuz

Bahar Yavuz, who graduated from the psychology department of Boğaziçi University in 2017, has been a member of the board of directors of the Association of Visually Impaired in Education, of which she is also one of the founders. As a disabled woman, Bahar Yavuz is involved in the activities of the Women with Disabilities Association and has played a role in the preparation and writing of many reports. She continues to advocate for the representation of young disabled women in national and international organizations' meetings and events, while also striving to strengthen her experience of working with different key groups in her professional career.

Emre İpekyüz

Emre İpekyüz, a human rights activist and social entrepreneur, has been working to improve the well-being of society since the day he was introduced to community volunteering. Through his social enterprise, he has conducted workshops and developed game content under the themes of basic psychosocial skills and specific skills. These materials have reached thousands of children and hundreds of young people in three different countries. Currently, he volunteers for various non-governmental organizations, including the Community Volunteers Foundation, Ali İsmail Korkmaz Foundation, The Checks and Balances Network, and the European Turkey Foundation.

Seren Anaçoğlu

Seren Anaçoğlu, a second-year student at Bahçeşehir University Law Faculty, has been an environmental activist and advocate for human and animal rights since 2019. In 2021, she represented Turkey as a Climate Ambassador for the European Union Climate Commission and has been one of the organizers of the Youth for Climate community, leading global climate strikes to raise awareness about the climate crisis. Currently, she is working at Ecording, a social initiative that uses drones to plant seeds produced by women entrepreneurs in fertile soil in forests.

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