Music academy to train orphaned and disabled children in Bursa
BURSA - Anatolia News Agency
About 400 children applied for the music academy project, 55 to 60 of whom are disabled or autistic, according to officials. AA photosA music academy has been founded in the northwestern province of Bursa to provide music training to disabled or orphaned Roma children in the city.
Initiated by Bursa’s Association for Promoting Roma Culture and Solidarity Among Musicians, the project was organized with the cooperation of the Bursa Governor’s Office, Bursa’s Yıldırım District Governor’s Office and the Yıldırım Municipality.
Within this project, some 200 disabled or orphaned Roma children between the ages of 9 and 15 will be taught to play various instruments including guitar, piano, violin, zither, clarinet and percussion. The courses will continue for 18 months. Also, 10 percent of the children will be sent to state conservatoires if they meet the admission requirements, according to the association’s chair, Veysel Zurna.
Children to attend concerts in the project
Zurna said the children will receive 1,080 hours of training in total by the end of the project. During the project, the children will have opportunities to attend various events and performances such as concerts, he said.
Zurna spoke about how he had been inspired to begin this project. “One day, three women came to the association; they wanted their children to learn to play clarinet. I gave them clarinets as gifts and asked for an acquaintance of mine to teach clarinet to the children. Then I thought that hundreds of people were living in similar conditions.”
He said they asked the Bursa governor, Yıldırım district governor and Yıldırım mayor for assistance and received support w from each of them. “Even if we save 30 percent [of the children living on the streets], I will be very pleased,” Zurna said.
Also, the deputy chair of the association, Talip Döbeş, said the project aimed to bring children from different backgrounds together and to try to select the gifted ones among them.
“About 400 children applied for the project, and 55 to 60 of them are disabled or autistic.” Döbeş said they had planned to accept a maximum of 100 students for each of two terms, but because of the great demand they began training 200 students in the first term. “Our target is to train 1,000 children over 18 months and send 100 of them to conservatories.” When the music academy was opened, the Yıldırım District Governor’s Office supplied the instruments and Bursa Governor’s Office provided other equipment, including computers, he said.
“This project is a long-term one. I hope it will continue for years,” Döbeş said.