Azize Leygara

Ashoka Fellow
Turkey,
Fellow Since 2014
Çocuklar Aynı Çatı Altında (ÇAÇA)

Citation

This profile was prepared when Azize Leygara was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2014.
The New Idea
Azize’s commitment to understanding the challenges street children face, her insights into their lives and her determination to develop a community-based, local and in-depth approach to remedy and empower children have helped her create a model that monitors, protects and supports children and their families to break the cycles of poverty and violence they face.

Azize and ÇAÇA establish a safe haven for children, free from all violence and discrimination they face at home, school or on the street. Their center acts as a home to a series of programs they design and implement to encourage the development of important life skills in the children. These programs include art workshops to foster creativity, as well as child to child, and youth to child programs to foster social skills such as empathy and communication without violence. All based on local customs, materials available in the ghettos and delivered by local youth from the local university, the programs are not only sustainable but also effective, in that they are familiar and easily accepted by the children.

Realizing that children constitute a whole with their families and the larger community, ÇAÇA also supports the families through household visits where they monitor and mentor them on risks faced by their children. Keeping a directory of the needs in the children’s families and the community, ÇAÇA brings in other civil society organizations and government agencies and follows the processes closely to ensure the needs are met. ÇAÇA also shares its experience and know-how to have more effective and better informed children’s policies and programs in the region.

ÇAÇA believes that revealing the actual potentials of the children constitutes an important factor towards the solution of all problems experienced in the post-conflict environment. Having reaching over 1500 children and 200 families annually, ÇAÇA’s efforts have been instrumental in diminishing the number of street children in Diyarbakır by half in the past five years, which gives them courage as they plan to expand to other cities in the region.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

More For You