Children and Basketball
Ülker Kids Basketball Festivals
Ülker’s initial projects involving children and sports were basketball-oriented. In 2005 Ülker and the Turkish Basketball Federation decided to sponsor Kids Basketball Festivals. The philosophy behind the festivals was in keeping with Ülker’s approach to social responsibility. The main goal of the organization was not for the teams to play for victory, but to teach them to play the game correctly and in a sportsmanlike manner. Ülker provided opportunities for friendship, fellowship and team spirit. The festivals brought children from all parts of Turkey together. This fundamental philosophy was perfect for Ülker’s child and sports-oriented projects.
Basketball has greatly enriched the lives of the 5,000 children from all parts of Turkey who have participated in Ülker’s Basketball Festivals. The positive influence that Ülker has on children was illustrated when Turkey hosted the 2010 FIBA World Championship. A total of 100 children were given the opportunity to watch the FIBA World Championship matches, and some of the world’s best players on the court.
Children of the World 2010
As for all Ülker “Children First” projects, the activities planned during the FIBA World Championship were designed for children. With the support of the Turkish Basketball Federation and the FIBA, Ülker undertook the sponsorship of the “Children of the World 2010”.
Under the project, children from 110 FIBA-participating countries were invited to Turkey. The Children of the World project focused on basketball, but included cultural, educational and social activities for the children. A total of three hundred 13 and 14 year old children came for the event, 220 of which were from foreign countries: 32 from African countries, 21 from Asian countries, 33 from European countries, 16 from the USA and 10 from Oceania. The event was hosted at the Darüşşafaka facility from August 24-31, 2010. At the camp, 76 languages were spoken but the common language was basketball.