Burgazada Island Summer Camp Awaiting Its Guests This Year

The Burgazada Island Summer Camp (Burgazada Tatil Evi), located in Burgazada, one of the beautiful Princes´ Islands of Istanbul, while entertaining the children and young people, has also been serving as a peaceful recreational place for the old people, for years. We asked a few questions to President Morris Kohen and co-President Sandra Yurgaf as to what awaits us at the Burgazada Island Summer Camp this year.
Burgazada Island Summer Camp Awaiting Its Guests This Year
(Front row, left to right) Ceni Kanditan, Süzet Sarfati, Feride Petilon, Morris Kohen; (back row, left to right) Moris Sarfati, Ishak Ibrahimzadeh, Doğan Yildiz, Nesim Niso Kanditan

Translation by Janet MITRANI

Burgazada Island Summer Camp is opening again, good luck. Could you share your enthusiasm with us?

During the pandemic, in the summers of 2020 and 2021, we couldn't open our Summer Camp due to known reasons. This year for the 2022 summer, we are thrilled that we will be meeting with our children, young people, and old people once again. We, as the 30-people Burgazada Island Summer Camp volunteer army, believe that our building becomes whole with the zippy and cheerful voices, laughter, and energy of the children.

What are the activities planned for this year and who are you getting support from?

We are aiming to realize every activity we can, taking advantage of the wonderful location of our Burgazada. Our standard program includes picnics, bike tours, visits to the neighboring islands, cultural trips, and many more. In addition to this, we will organize boat tours that our children enjoy greatly. Also, in the context of our building, we are providing the kids with all kinds of sporting activity opportunities. Among these are basketball, swimming pool games, table tennis, and soccer tournaments.

In the framework of our artistic activities, we have painting, jewelry making, sculpture, and dance workshops. Besides these, our children experience the daytime activities, which also include swimming classes, at the Büyükada Alef facilities and Burgazada Deniz Klübü [Burgazada Beach Club], on various days of the week. Therefore, they have the chance to meet the children their age, outside of the Summer Camp. At this point, we must express our gratitude to the Alef and GKD (Göztepe Culture Association) youth clubs, who always support us.

Burgazada Island Summer Camp

Will the activities be only during the day? Could you tell us about the evening programs?

We are also planning to organize evening activities after the dinnertime, such as themed nights, music, and dance at our building's terrace under the stars. Also, two nights a week, the children will have the chance to watch popular children's movies. In addition, once a week, our children will get to enjoy the piano music played by the volunteer musicians.

What kind of renovations have you done in your building during the period you could not operate?

During the period we could not operate, we have completed all the missing stuff in our building. All our bedsheets and duvet cover sets have been renewed. We had our building painted completely. The insulation problem we previously had with our terrace floor has been fixed. Our Kosher kitchen has been overhauled. In addition to our other activities, we furnished a pool table and the necessary equipment, as we thought it would interest the children.

How would you list the benefits of spending the summer at Burgazada Summer Camp for the children?

We believe that our Burgazada Summer Camp has a lot of positive effects, both social and cultural, on the participating children. The practical skills they learn during their stay here, learning to be and stay active, making new friends, gaining team spirit, and enjoying the Shabbat dinners here, shared also with the summer residents of our island, will be wonderful achievements for our children, in terms of education as well as development.

Some members of the Burgazada Summer Camp Volunteers in the camp building (from the archive)

Some of the Burgazada Summer Camp Volunteers in the building (from the archives)

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