VIDEO: SMU Turkish Student Association Bazaar

April 21, 2011 by · Comments Off 

Video By Fernando Valdes

Volunteers offer home baked Turkish cuisine to SMU students on April 20, 2011. (PHOTO BY MEGHAN GARLICH / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

The SMU Turkish Student Association hosted an all-day, charity-driven Turkish bake craft sale and performance show Wednesday, April 20. The bazaar aimed to raised awareness about the turkish culture by allowing people to taste turkish cuisine and watch award winning dancers perform folk dances.

All profits from the sale will be donated to The Family Place.

Story by Amanda Oldham

A new set of smells graced the Flagpole area Wednesday as the Turkish Student’s Association held their annual Turkish Festival, a combination bake sale and dance presentation. The Festival was not only a fundraiser for The Family Place, a non-profit organization that provides assistance to victims of family violence, but also a snapshot of real Turkish culture.
“People say they know nice restaurants,” former SMU student Orkhan Rasulov said, “but they’re not real representations of the country.”

All of the food provided, from the gyro to the ?öbiyet, were handmade, which provided the scene with a strong sense of authenticity. From lunch time to dinner, students could swing by the tent and have a traditional Turkish meal.

“The food was provided by Turkish women,” TSA president Kamile Yagei said. “We have Turkish desserts, baklava, old traditional food.”

(Photo by Amanda Oldham/The Daily Mustang)

Along with the food, accessories, ranging from scarves to bags, were sold. Each item was handmade as well, a fact the students felt was a good illustration of the importance of family in their lives.

“It’s a good representation of Turkish culture and Turkish cuisine,” Selim Ogle Selim said. “It’s a good organization and a good activity.”

Local high school students performed Turkish dances they learned as the afternoon wore on, making the event festive and fun. Rasulov believed the whole event was a real slice of life up for grabs to other SMU students.

“If you go to Turkey with the tourism agency, you stay a tourist,” Rasulov said. “But if you go with ordinary people, you can understand what it’s like inside.”

Turkish Bake Sale Benefits Underprivileged Youth

November 24, 2008 by · Comments Off 

By Madeline Olds

SMU’s Turkish Student Association put together an all-day, charity-driven Turkish bake and craft sale Thursday, Nov. 20. The Turkish Student Association plans to donate all the proceeds it made from the sale to the “Make a Child Smile” project, which helps poor and underprivileged kids all over the world who lack important resources in their lives.

“We like to help the kids by giving them money for new books and more education,” said TSA president Kamile Yagcí.

The sale consisted of many common and casual Turkish foods like stuffed grape leaves, b?rek, three types of baklava, and cookies. It is difficult to find such foods in the U.S. because they require very special cooking skills and they’re hard to keep fresh for a very long time. Crafts were also available for sale at the event. Items such as jewelry, linens, and decorative accents were very popular, and most are handmade.

The bake sale at the flagpole received many sponsors to fund the event, such as Interfaith Dialogue Student Association, Turkish American Women Association, Raindrop Turkish House, and Raindrop Helping Hands. Raindrop Turkish Hands provided all of the cooked food for the sale, while Raindrop Helping Hands funded the gathering and covered other expenses.

Raindrop Helping Hands was the main sponsor of the event, and its focus is to help those who are, or were, victims of natural disasters. More recently, they have concentrated their attention to aiding those in Houston who have been severely affected by Hurricane Ike.

By the end of the bake sale, all the food that was prepared had been sold, and Yagcí hoped they reached their goal of $1,000 in sales with around 100 customers or more throughout the day. This is the first time TSA has hosted this type of gathering, and they plan to do it again in the future.

“We had a pretty good turnout, and will try to do this again in the spring,” stated Yagcí.

All 64 members of the TSA work very hard to reach their common goal of providing financial relief to those in need. They continue to develop new ways to reach out to people and always welcome others in contributing or volunteering. For more information about the Raindrop Helping Hands and the “Make a Child Smile” project, go to