BackgroundThe Vehbi Koç Foundation (Vehbi Koç Vakfı) was first endowed on 17 January 1969. Its establishment made it the first major private foundation of the Turkish Republic and brought about a revival of the age-old tradition of the Vakıf – philanthropic endowments for the public good. The foundation has since then carried out a large number of activities in the fields of education, healthcare and culture - all of which are of utmost importance to the nation’s wellbeing and further development – and has become a role model to a great many other philanthropists. In its first years, the foundation used its resources to fund the establishment of several schools, student dormitories, libraries and clinics, handing each over to the relevant public administration. Later, it pioneered the setting up of a number of major not-for-profit institutions in each of its focus areas of education, healthcare and culture. Throughout its history, the foundation has provided thousands of scholarships to help talented students in need attain equal opportunity in education.
With significant investments and commitments made in the field of education, healthcare and culture, the Koç Family and the Vehbi Koç Foundation take pride in being appreciated by many reputable institutions in the international arena. The Koç Family and the Vehbi Koç Foundation is the only Family and Institution to receive all three of these prominent awards: World Monument Fund - ‘Hadrian Award’ (2007), Carnegie Foundation -‘ Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy’ (2009), BNP Paribas - ‘Grand Prize for Individual Philanthropy’ (2011).
MissionTo create institutionalised and sustainable charitable services to serve the Turkish people in the areas of education, health care and cultural heritage.
Programme areasThe foundation serves the community by supporting existing active organisations in its fields of interest and providing scholarships to financially disadvantaged youth, as well as forming and operating other establishments. Its activities are concentrated in the following areas:
• Health care
• Cultural heritage
Strives to raise the society's standards to a higher level by establishing educational institutions which focus on achieving top quality. In line with the above principle, the foundation founded the Vehbi Koç Vakfi University, Koç Private Elementary and High School. The foundation also awards scholarships to talented students in need of financial support, with the aim of establishing the principle of equal opportunity in education. In addition, the foundation completed the 'Eight Year Continuous Education' campaign by building 13 primary schools in 10 provinces in 2001.
Seeks to create models that provide a high standard of health care and create permanent facilities for the benefit of the country. Activities include the purchase and expansion of the American Hospital in Istanbul and the opening of the Italian Oncology and Rehabilitation Hospital. The Semahat Arsel Nursing Education and Research Centre was added on to the hospital to raise the level of knowledge in the nursing profession and to improve the quality of patient care. Scholarships are granted to nurses to continue their training.
Concentrates on preserving Turkey's cultural heritage through various museums and research centres including the Sadberk Hanim Museum, Turkey's first private museum with an expansive archaeological and fine arts collection; the Suna-Inan Kiraç Research Institute on Mediterranean Civilisations, which carries out research in archaeology and indigenous cultures, and a research centre on Vehbi Koç and Ankara. Support is also given for cultural and artistic projects that seek to enrich the cultural life of the nation and for archaeological excavations in Turkey.