Istanbul&I News

Image Description

Interview With Manohur Chand Poonyth

17 Temmuz 2023

I’m Manohur Chand Poonyth and I’m from Mauritius. I have been volunteering in this community since December 2019 and contributed as a general volunteer, and at management level as an HR Officer. I have been serving as the Executive Coordinator of Istanbul&I since February 2022 and this July it will be the end of my 1.5 year term.

Read more
Featured News  .  11 min read  .  1173

Image Description

Bellesan Şaban - Volunteer Spotlight

18 Haziran 2023

Bellesan, commonly pronounced Beylesen, is a Turkmen from Syria. She came to Turkey back in 2013 and has since been continuing her education. At the moment she's a junior majoring in psychology. She first become a member of Istanbul&I in the summer of 2022 as a Language Exchange Event Officer, and shortly after she became the event's manager. 

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  3 min read  .  860

Image Description

Arts&Crafts for Mental Health Workshop

26 Mayıs 2023

On the second Sunday in April, our volunteers organized a workshop with Andrey Stanislavsky as the host. This workshop was about mental health, with the title “what the blot?”, a meditative experience that allows you to compose and paint extraordinary ink spots to create dazzling worlds, hidden objects, and whatever your imagination comes up with.

Read more
Project Highlight  .  4 min read  .  998

Image Description

Ghais Alhasan - Volunteer Spotlight

12 Mayıs 2023

Ghais is a non-binary Syrian computer engineer that came to Istanbul with their family in early 2015 in pursuit of a better life after living for around 15 years in Saudi Arabia. After graduating from the university here, Ghais was inspired by their two siblings Bisher and Ahmad to join I&I as they've both taken leadership roles in the NGO from its early days.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  617

Image Description

Showing Up for Our Furry Neighbors! Interview With Salma Bahloul, Our Animal Welfare Project Manager

11 Mayıs 2023

Here at the Istanbul&I Newsletter, we like to highlight our projects and the improvements of the NGO as a whole. For this interview, we got to chatting with Salma Bahloul, our Animal Welfare project manager and got to learn more about her background, why the project is important, and so many other things. 

Read more
Major Event  .  6 min read  .  608

Image Description

Garanga’o Culture Night

10 Nisan 2023

Last Saturday in March, Istanbul&I held yet another Culture Night, this time for Garangao. Garangao is a celebration that is widely practiced in Gulf countries. It is a colorful and lively event that brings people of all ages together to enjoy traditional food, music, and games.

Read more
Major Event  .  2 min read  .  1060

Image Description

Aylin Guler - Volunteer Spotlight

3 Nisan 2023

Aylin is an architecture graduate and is currently doing her master's at the Yıldız Technical University, majoring in Regional Planning. After volunteering as the Art Director at Istanbul&I, Aylin took over the Communication Coordinator position. “Office Renovation” and “Iftar & Community” were just a few of her first volunteering projects and she soon became a regular at the Yedikule Animal Shelter and Sokak Lambası.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1002

Image Description

ÇayTalks: "Fasting and Spirituality During Ramadan”

28 Mart 2023

As spring begins with its eclectic mix of rainy and sunny days, so does the month of Ramadan in 2023. On a nice sunny afternoon, Istanbul&I held its ÇayTalks event with the topic of "Fasting and Spirituality". The event was held in the office, and was attended by 9 eager attendees looking to discuss the topic. How do fasting and spirituality go together? That's what this event, led by our volunteers Wisdom and Zohra, aimed to discuss. 

Read more
Social Inclusion Event  .  2 min read  .  1666

Image Description

Where it started and where it's going: Interview with the Istanbul&I founder, Ashkan Teymour

21 Mart 2023

For the February edition of our newsletter, we got to have a chat with Ashkan Teymour, one of the founding members of Istanbul&I. We discussed the early days of the organization and how it's evolved since then. 

Read more
Project Highlight  .  7 min read  .  982

Image Description

Zohra Saidi - Volunteer Spotlight

17 Mart 2023

Zohra is a French-Moroccan student in Political Sciences and International relations. She has been volunteering at Istanbul&I since September 2022, when she first arrived in Türkiye. She originally joined the HR Team as Recruitment and Engagement officer and was elected HR Coordinator in January 2023. 



Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1141

Image Description

Interview with the former President of Mauritius - Ameenah Gurib Fakim

10 Şubat 2023

On his trip to Mauritius in August 2022, our Executive Coordinator, Chand had the opportunity to meet with the former President of Mauritius, Ameenah Gurib Fakim to interview her. Our NGO, Istanbul&I, is an ambassador of the United4Her project by the Garip&Zeycan Yıldırım Foundation.

Read more
Featured News  .  15 min read  .  1255

Image Description

Mohamud Kalil - Volunteer Spotlight

15 Ocak 2023

Mohamud Kalil is a student at Halic University majoring in Industrial Engineering and hailing from Somalia. He is a dedicated and hard-working individual who is always seeking ways to give back to his community. In October 2022, Mohamud began volunteering at Istanbul&i, an organization that aims to promote social and cultural activities and support underprivileged individuals in the community.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  3 min read  .  980

Image Description

Interview with Ex Events Coordinator: Zainab Alqritli

14 Ocak 2023

I am Zainab Alqritli, a Libyan Jordanian that has been living in Istanbul since 2014. Currently, I am studying Interior Architectural and Environmental Design at Beykoz University. I am a curious person, therefore you will always find me attending different courses and learning something new; right now I am more interested in developing my art skills and to improve my Mandarin and Korean.

Read more
Major Event  .  8 min read  .  1180

Image Description

Sarah Aoun - Volunteer Spotlight

14 Ocak 2023

Sarah Aoun is currently a 5th-year medical student studying at Bahçeşehir University. She is Tunisian but has spent her entire childhood in Saudi Arabia. “Although I wouldn’t take it back for the world, this has always led me to feel slightly out of place wherever I go. In time, I realized, diverse communities like Istanbul & I is where I truly feel at home.” said Sarah.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  3 min read  .  1515

Image Description

Istanbul&I’s Winter Flea Market and Supporting the Community

20 Aralık 2022

On Saturday and Sunday consecutively, Dec. 10 and 11, 2022, the Istanbul&I team hosted the flea market which takes place every few months in the Istanbul&I office. A lot of people donated clothes to sell them there, plus eight small business owners participated.

Read more
Project Highlight  .  3 min read  .  897

Image Description

Hanieh Kachooee - Volunteer Spotlight

12 Aralık 2022

Hanieh was born in Iran and raised in different countries. Due to her parent’s adventurous lifestyle, she became acquainted with people from all walks of life. Hanieh is a huge food enthusiast and she expresses herself through the food she makes. She is currently residing in Turkey. Hanieh joined Istanbul&I as the newsletter editor back in 2021. In her free time, she likes to read, paint, make ceramics, try new cuisines, and develop recipes in her kitchen. 

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1050

Image Description

ÇayTalks: "First Impressions" over tea

7 Aralık 2022

Winter has taken more of a hold over the city of Istanbul, and the weather has become slightly more consistent. On another chilly November night ÇayTalks, a staple of Istanbul&I's events, was held in the office. The topic of the discussion was "First Impressions'' and as always, the attendees answered a plethora of questions in a roundtable-style rotation.

Read more
Social Inclusion Event  .  3 min read  .  1752

Image Description

Language Exchange Event and the Acceptance of Different Opinions

30 Kasım 2022

On the first Sunday of November, there were more than 26 volunteers in the Istanbul&I office, including new and old volunteers from all around the world. All there for a chance to exchange ideas and meet new people.

Read more
Project Highlight  .  3 min read  .  1684

Image Description

"Moments in Life": Virtual Language Exchange Event

15 Kasım 2022

October 31st is known around the world as Halloween but on this fateful night, Istanbul&I held their virtual Language Exchange Event (LEE). Trick or treating and attending a Halloween party could be memorable moments unto themselves and so is attending one of I&I's LEEs. The online event was attended by 15 people, looking to sharpen their skills in a different language.

Read more
Project Highlight  .  2 min read  .  1132

Image Description

Orientation Day and the Meaning of Being Part of the Istanbul&I Community

1 Kasım 2022

On the last Saturday of the month, the Istanbul&I office was filled with eager new volunteers. There were 27 newly-recruited volunteers and 42 participants in total. It was a great day,  and I got to know people recruited from all over the world, trying to volunteer and help with such wonderful people because Istanbul&I is not an organization; it is a team of friends or rather a family that tries in various ways to support the city in which they reside.

Read more
Major Event  .  2 min read  .  1323

Image Description

Yusuf Ziya - Volunteer Spotlight

30 Ekim 2022

Yusuf Ziya is from Şanlı Urfa, Turkey. He has been working as an accountant since 2008 and as Istanbul&I’s human welfare project manager for the past six months. He joined Istanbul&I as a volunteer in 2021.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1113

Image Description

Self-Care Workshop: An Interview with Paz

16 Ekim 2022

It’s a rainy mid-September afternoon as Paz Paulsen-Sacks sets up the Istanbul&I office for his weekly Self-Care Workshop. The 14 attendees seated in a circle, take off their shoes and listen to the soothing sounds of the Karaköy rain. Paz begins the meditation with ringing a Tibetan bell as he gives the attendants prompts to ponder about, like “Breathing in, I’m aware of the person I love. Breathing out, I offer them a smile.” Each ring is followed by silent meditation.

Read more
Project Highlight  .  7 min read  .  1306

Image Description

Eylül Üstünçelik - Volunteer Spotlight

3 Ekim 2022

Eylül is a 23-year-old intern lawyer, from Samsun, Turkey. She has been living in Istanbul since 2017 and volunteering at Istanbul&I for a year. She started volunteering as a Turkish Speaking Club co-manager. After three months in that position, she became a part of the legal committee and has been working with the team since December 2021. She enjoys ice skating and climbing.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1825

Image Description

Pakistani Culture Night

30 Eylül 2022

The longstanding Istanbul&I tradition of culture night roars on with the Pakistani Culture Night on September 24, 2022. It was an evening featuring a country full of history and culture. The event was attended by 90 participants on a chilly Saturday night. With the place being packed with everyone excited to drink in the traditions, geography, and cultural landmarks of Pakistan, the event commenced.

Read more
Social Inclusion Event  .  3 min read  .  1905

Image Description

Interview with the Ex-Executive Coordinators, Junko and Tahiya

21 Eylül 2022

Istanbul&I has been around for quite some time, and throughout our history, we have had many wonderful executive coordinators (ECs) making sure the organization runs as smoothly as possible. About two terms ago, the organization tried something new!

Read more
Featured News  .  11 min read  .  1926

Image Description

French Culture Night: Not Only Croissants and Baguettes

17 Eylül 2022

Croissants and baguettes, foods that immediately conjure the thought of France. But there is far more to the French culture. On a fair-weathered Sunday night, the Istanbul&I French Culture Night was held in the grassy fields of Maçka Park. A large crowd of nearly 50 people was present and ready to learn about what the culture had to offer besides its baked goods.

Read more
Social Inclusion Event  .  3 min read  .  1482

Image Description

Hagar Soultan - Volunteer Spotlight

26 Ağustos 2022

Hagar Sultan is an Egyptian, who came to live in Istanbul six years ago. She graduated from BAU with a medical degree in July 2022. In her free time, she likes to hang out with friends and that is one of the reasons why she started to volunteer: to socialize more. 

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1424

Image Description

Istanbul&I TALK Series presents: Hospitality and its Resentment, Understanding Local Responses to Refugees

16 Ağustos 2022

As July drew to a close, the Istanbul&I attendants gathered in the office for another iteration of the TALK series. This one was presented by Emma Walker-Silverman, a Ph.D. candidate at the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford. One by one, the attendees signed up through the QR code placed by the front door to get a front-row seat to these yet unpublished findings, making them one of the first crowds to see it. A total of 13 attendants listened attentively as Emma explained her findings. The presentation was followed by a Q&A / discussion that got the audience more involved. 

Read more
Social Inclusion Event  .  3 min read  .  1447

Image Description

Noor Bhaghani - Volunteer Spotlight

9 Ağustos 2022

Noor is from San Diego, California but currently lives  and studies at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She initially found out about Istanbul&I through her cousin who lived in Istanbul, and knew she was looking to work in a social inclusion oriented organization.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1796

Image Description

Istanbul&I Summer Flea Market - Beating the Heat With Kindness

5 Ağustos 2022

As the summer heats up, so does the giving spirit in the air. Volunteers at the Istanbul&I Summer Flea Market saw this firsthand. An event held over three days (Friday through Sunday), brought out many people from all around the community. The market hosted many items for purchase and was overall a great success. A large portion of the proceeds went to the Mor Çatı Women’s Shelter, a collaborator of Istanbul&I that has also been present at previous events.

Read more
Major Event  .  2 min read  .  1335

Image Description

Half-year round-up: Interview with Istanbul&I’s Executive Coordinator, Manohur Chand Poonyth

4 Ağustos 2022

What has been the highlight of the first half of 2022?

November 2022 will be our 5th year as a registered NGO in Turkey. What amazes me at Istanbul&I is the amount of effort that dedicated volunteers put into running the organization!

Read more
Featured News  .  8 min read  .  1680

Image Description

Hande Hepşen - Volunteer Spotlight

4 Ağustos 2022

Hande was born and raised in Istanbul, Turkey. She graduated from Istanbul University with a degree in  Journalism and has been working in media production since 2020. She started volunteering at Istanbul&I in 2019 and was a member of the programming committee. She was one of the volunteer superstars of 2020 because of her dedication to volunteering even through the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  3 min read  .  2571

Image Description

Elif Bayındır - Volunteer Spotlight

4 Ağustos 2022

Elif is from Istanbul, Turkey. She studied physics and has been working as a data analyst since 2020. She is also working on her Master's thesis, which is about climate change modeling. She enjoys getting to know new people and spending time with them. She also loves nature and storytelling.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  2364

Image Description

Elma Haveri - Volunteer Spotlight

4 Ağustos 2022

Elma is from Shkoder, Albania. She studied in North Cyprus and graduated with a master’s degree in Marketing Management. Despite her path in marketing, volunteering is one of her biggest passions. Her most memorable experience in volunteering is the one for Red Cross Albania right after the pandemic was over. This challenging period pushed her belief that only together and by helping each other can we progress.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  2231

Image Description

Ezgi Sesil - Volunteer Spotlight

3 Ağustos 2022

Ezgi studied Biology at Istanbul University and then started her master's degree in Environmental Sciences at Boğaziçi University. However, she decided to change her career plan and left her master's degree to study Combined Arts at Yıldız Technical University.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1587

Image Description

Taha Jebbar - Volunteer Spotlight

31 Temmuz 2022

Taha is from Rabat, Morocco. He is a 22-year-old master’s student at Altınbaş University, majoring in industrial engineering. Taha is engaged with social entrepreneurship and believes this is how we can have a global impact. He is also interested in psychology. In his free time, Taha enjoys reading, watching movies and series, listening to music, and last but not least, volunteering. 

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  3 min read  .  1238

Image Description

Wajdee Chayeb - Volunteer Spotlight

31 Temmuz 2022

Wajdee is from Aleppo, Syria, born in 1999. He is a senior student majoring in physics at Koç University. He has been a volunteer in Istanbul&I since April 2021 and has been managing the Çay Talks event since then.

Read more
Volunteer Spotlight  .  2 min read  .  1480