TİKA carried out 172 projects and activities in 10 years in Latin America
Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) carried out a total of 172 projects and activities in 10 years within the fields such as education, healthcare, agriculture, and infrastructure in Latin America.
As part of its multidimensional foreign policies, Turkey has been carrying out policies that are more active in Latin America and the Caribbean region in order to improve its relationships with the countries there. Following the "Latin America and the Caribbean Action Plan" which was introduced in 1998 and updated in 2006 in Turkey, that year was named "the year of Latin America and the Caribbean". Within this context, the aim is to maintain solidarity with the countries in this region through development, collaboration and humanitarian assistance that are carried out with the help of TİKA, which contributes to Turkey’s vision pursuant to foreign policies in many areas.
Between the years 2008 and 2018, TİKA carried out a total of 172 projects and activities within fields such as education, healthcare, agriculture, and infrastructure in Latin America. In order to accelerate its activities in the region, TİKA opened up its first office in Mexico in 2014. The second office was set up in Bogota, the capital of Colombia in 2015. Carrying out operations in many countries from Guyana to Argentina, and from Venezuela to Paraguay, TİKA keeps building bridges between Turkey and the countries in this region with projects to support women employment, entrepreneurship, and the peace process in Colombia.
TİKA built a school in Orejón, the heart of the peace process in Colombia.
The school that TİKA built in Orejón, one of the most important regions in Colombia regarding the peace process, is of vital importance. Considered the heart of the peace process in Colombia, Orejón resembles the Black Sea region in Turkey due to its tough terrains with some areas that can only be reached with mules, as well as its valleys and houses that are distant from each other.
As part of the "Experience Sharing Program 2018", TİKA organized an event for 11 undergraduate students in Colombia that comprises of Spanish courses, volunteer works, social and cultural interactions. On the other hand, TİKA supplied the El Charco La Tribuna School with two boats in order to facilitate the commute of 300 students who live far away from the center of El Charco Municipality in Colombia.
The Mustafa Kemal Atatürk Primary School in Chile was also renovated with TİKA’s support after the President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan visited the school in 2016 and requested a renovation. As part of the project, the floorings and the windows of the school, where 280 students receive education, were replaced. Additionally, the walls of the school were remodeled and repainted whereas the sports area and the playground were improved.
TİKA’s healthcare support in the region
Continuing its support in healthcare, in addition to education, TİKA provided medical equipment support to various hospitals in Colombia, Peru, and Brazil. Furthermore, as part of the "Reintroducing the People with Disabilities into the Society Project" that was carried out in Colombia in 2017, the rehabilitation center in the Municipality of Santa Rosa de Cabal was provided equipment by TİKA.
In Suriname, Bolivia, and Guyana, on the other hand, TİKA supplied 3 ambulances. TİKA also set up a neonatal intensive care unit at the Tijuana General Hospital, which operates under the National System for Integral Family Development (DIF) in Baja California, Mexico. In addition to that, the groundbreaking ceremony took place for the healthcare center which will be built in the town of El Espinal in Oaxaca, Mexico.
TİKA continues its projects for the Palestinians in Chile
The service capacity of the Union Arabe de Beneficencia Nursing Home in Santiago, the capital of Chile, was increased after the renovations that were carried out by TİKA. The third and fourth generations of the families who migrated from the Arab countries, primarily from Palestine, to Chile in the early 20th century still live in Chile today. Union Arabe de Beneficencia provides nursing services to this population at its facilities. In Chile, 500,000 Palestinians live, most of which are Christians. TİKA also sponsored Club Deportivo Palestino, a football club founded in Chile by people of Palestinian origin. Two grass pitches were set up so that Deportivo Palestino, which was founded in 1920 and plays in the Primera División de Chile, can have better training facilities. The alterations and the renovations of the As-Salam Mosque was also carried out by TİKA, where Muslims in Santiago go to pray. TİKA also carried out the project to fulfil the needs and set up the interior decoration of the Abu Bakr Siddiq Mosque in Bogota, the capital of Colombia, as part of President Erdoğan’s visit to this country.
Support to women in Latin America
TİKA provided textile equipment to give a new business opportunity to 12 women, who settled in Cucuta, one of the cities that was widely affected by the mass migration from Venezuela to Colombia, and needed to make a living for their families. Also, equipment support was provided for the Association of Women on the Road to Development that operates in Linares, Chile. Finally, 55 women who live in the villages of Pueblo Nuevo and Orejón in Medellin, Colombia received support in the egg and poultry industry.
Economic and infrastructural support
TİKA provided workbenches for 46 families who make a living by trading meat, chicken and fish products at the Dario Echandia market in the Chaparral region of Colombia. Also, 18 gravity separators were provided for the Quinoa Producers’ Association which has approximately 430 members and was established by the locals in order to help the indigenous people of Quechua and Aymara, which are among the poorest communities in Bolivia, to obtain organic production certificate and increase their production to the level of export. Furthermore, TİKA sent aid packages to Mexico immediately after the earthquake last year.