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Meeting the Children at the 8th Smiling Child Fest

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MEETING THE CHILDREN AT THE 8th SMILING CHILD FESTIVAL As a result of the gift to the world's children of our great leader, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, 23 April - National Sovereignty and Children's Holiday, children with and without disabilities joined together with participants from our University at the 8th Smiling Child Festival, 14-17 April, to celebrate his national and international message that "the barriers that  prevent disabled children from living as equals with all children must be lifted" and to introduce the world to our country, our culture, and our hospitality.

The Feyziye Schools Foundation - Isik University partnered with the Spinal Chord Paralytics Association of Turkey at the 8th Smiling Child Festival from 14-17 April, 2014. Isik University was represented by 50 student volunteers throughout the festival. In addition to Turkey, children ages 7-15, both with and without disabilities, participated in the "Smiling Child" art and cultural activities.

Embassies present in Turkey hosted children and their representatives at the International Smiling Child Festival who have disabilities in orthopedics, hearing, speaking, vision, and mental capacities. Arriving in Istanbul from all over Anatolia were primary and middle school students with and without disabilities, and their companions, to demonstrate the ability for all children, regardless of ability to come together for any form of activity.

Throughout the festival, guided tours of Istanbul's rich cultural history took place. The International Smiling Child Festival Council meeting featured a presentation on the world of disabled children.

In attendance at the Gala were Işık University Rector Prof. Dr. Nafiye Güneç Kıyak, Işık University Economics and Management Sciences Faculty Dean, Prof. Dr. Mehmet Kaytaz, as well Işık University students. As the sponsor for the evening's activities, Rector Prof. Dr. Nafiye Güneç Kıyak offered her thank you remarks.

Also at the evening affair were schools from Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzogovina, Indonesia, Georgia, England, Kosovo, Hungary, Macedonia, and Romania.