Organized by Union of Turkish Municipality (TDBB) in cooperation with TIKA and Selçuklu (Konya) Municipality between 6 and 12 March 2015 with the participation of 12 female local government experts from 7 different countries, “Woman Employment and Activities for Woman in Local Governments” Expert Training Program was completed.

The program started with the opening session that was held in Union Headquarters, with the participation of 12 female experts from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kyrgyzstan, TRNC, Kosovo, Macedonia and Romania. In the program in which Secretary General of TDBB Fahri Solak gave information about the activities of TDBB and also about the expert program, Visoko Municipality Officer for Public Procurement Procedure Alma Frljak on behalf of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Plav Municipality Secretary for Economy, Development and Finance Meliha Hadzialjevic on behalf of Montenegro, Uzgen Municipality Chief of Staff Sapida Abduvalieva on behalf of Kyrgyzstan, Güzelyurt Municipality Senior Administrative Officer Şerife Nur Oyal on behalf of TRNC, Mamusa Municipality Director of Human Rights, Gender Equality and Disability Seylan Mazrek on behalf of Kosovo, Ohrid Municipality Legal Assistant in the Mayor’s Office Katerina Rilkova on behalf Macedonia and Bucharest City Municipality Head of Service Daniela Tomescu on behalf of Romania made opening speeches and stated their pleasure for the program and the coincidence of organizing the program in the week of March 8 International Women’s Day.

After the opening ceremony the participants made a cultural tour in Istanbul; they visited Topkapı Cultural Houses Park and Panorama 1453 Museum. They continued the program by going to Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s Woman Coordination Center and examined the activities of the institution with the briefing of Director of İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s Social Services Department Emine Çınar Açıkalın. Following their visit in the center, the participants flied to Konya.

On the second day of the program the delegations were briefed about the woman activities of Selçuklu Municipality by Director of Cultural Affairs Ahmet Bilgiç, and made a field visit accompanied by Deputy Mayor and also Council Member Zeynep Ümit Altınsoy, to the places which are related to the topic such as Gazalya Hatun Mansion, Tennis Court, and Selçuklu Autism and Down-Syndrome Kids Wellness Center. After visiting Mayor of Selçuklu and also Member of TDBB Administrative Board Uğur İbrahim Altay, the group made a city tour visiting Tropical Butterfly Garden, Sille Valley and Mevlana Mosque and Tomb, accompanied by female council members.

On the third day of the program, the delegations made an examination on the woman activities of Meram Municipality, accompanied by Deputy Mayor and also Council Member Cihat Özkan. After the cultural tour in the area, the delegations went to Bacıyan-ı Meram Cooperative and here met with the council members Seyhan Taşbaşı, Mürüvvet Dursun and Cihat Özkan; then they were briefed by Director of the Cooperative Feray Civcik about the functioning of the institution. Afterwards the group visited one of the projects of Meram Municipality, “80 Binde Devri Alem” Park, and then visited Mayor of Meram Fatma Toru in her office. The delegations were informed about the woman studies and woman employment activities of the municipality by Mayor Fatma Toru; after the present-giving ceremony and dinner, they returned to Istanbul.

On the fourth day of the program the delegations visited UCLG-MEWA Headquarters. In the meeting that brought the authorities of Istanbul Metropolitan, Sarıyer and Şişli Municipalities together, the group was enlightened about the woman activities of the abovementioned municipalities. After present-giving ceremony and lunch, the guests made a city tour in historical Istanbul.

On the last day of the program, the delegations first visited the Headquarters of Women and Democracy Association (KADEM) and were made a presentation by Founding Member Melek Çakıroğlu and Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Project Director Feride Kurtulmuş on the cooperation of NGOs and local governments on woman activities. After lunch, the group visited Esenler Municipality Kadir Topbaş Cultural Center and was briefed about Istanbul Woman Employment and Entrepreneurship Project by Project Coordinator Sevilay Acar. After the presentation the group went to Esenler Municipality and met with TDBB Member Mayor of Esenler Tevfik Göksu on the future projects of the municipality. On the closing ceremony hosted by Esenler Municipality in Kadir Topbaş Cultural Center, the participants evaluated the one-week program. After the presentation of Participation Certificates by Deputy Mayor of Esenler Hasan Taşçı and Secretary General of TDBB Fahri Solak to the delegations and also present-giving ceremony, the program was completed.