Dear Berkeley Turkish School Community,
We hope this message finds you well, and that you’re enjoying the remaining weeks of the season with your families.
This summer, we have been strategizing on how we can continue to support and nurture our growing community. Since the inception of our school, we got to know each other closer through activities such as our potlucks, school performances, parent seminars, festivals and celebrations. As our children grew, our community grew as well. We thank you for helping us by being integral participants in this endeavor through volunteering your services and your time, and by inviting your own circles of friends and families to our school. We are very happy to be the spark that started this exciting momentum that brought us all together.
With growth, comes change. After assessing our experiences of the last 3.5 years and weighing many options, we feel we can best meet the needs and desires of our community, and make the most positive impact by implementing an intentional shift of our mission and program from a children’s language school to a community service organization. We will integrate the Turkish Language into this new approach through ‘immersion’ in the community and activities rather than a traditional ‘school’ format.
As such, we will continue developing BTS as an instigator of an active, lively, modern and diverse community hub that it already is, and keep offering opportunities for discovering shared values and respectful engagement with one another.
In Fall 2018, based on demand, we are going to focus our attention to bringing to life adult and children cultural activities such as the following. (We will hold these activities in different local venues we will rent out instead of one location.)
- BTS Family Club: Continue exploring the Bay Area culture with group outings such as hikes, visits to museums, movies, theaters, symphony or ballet as well as continuing holding group workshops on subjects such as Leadership, KidPower, finances, family dynamics, career development and many more subjects.
- Arts and Culture: Peer interest groups such as: Movie Club; Book Club; Turkish Conversation Club; Turkish Cuisine Club; Music Club; Literature and Lectures; Theater and Dance classes.
- Turkish Life & Holidays: Continue celebrating Turkish Holidays with our extended community in a meaningful way.
- Adult Classes: Lifelong learning is our motto. One great example of this model is the BTS folklore group that was formed last Spring which has been such a pleasure to take part in. Our team danced at the Children’s Day Festival in April, and was invited to the Monterey Turkish Festival to perform a few weeks ago. We will be performing at the Republic Ball Gala in October soon, and more soon after that. We want to keep growing this program and add other diverse adult classes such as a floral design workshop we will hold in October.
While we embark on this fresh and exciting journey, we look forward to our community actively participating in and supporting the continued enrichment of our lives for both adults and children. So, we encourage everyone in our community to think creatively about their talents and interests, and share with us any specific activities or classes you’d like to lead in areas you’re passionate about.
Please email or call with any thoughts or suggestions, and be ready to lead efforts. It takes a village!
Bayramınız kutlu olsun!
Başak Altan & Başak Çakıcı