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DayMer

Turkish and Kurdish Community Centre

about-us-organisational-overview

About us - Organisational Overview:

DAY-MER is a voluntary organisation, which has current membership of 950, and it provides services for around 10,000 people a year. It became a charity organisation on 3 July 1991.

DAY-MER has grown since its formation in 1989 from a small community centre to become one of the largest and first community centres where people sought help with their language, immigration, education, social and housing problems.  It went through a period of rapid growth when in receipt of ESF money in 1999, and then London Council’s, Hackney Council and The Learning Trust grants which increased the budget of the organisation by almost 50%.
 
DAY-MER’s annual festivals (takes place in summer) since its foundation are attended by thousands of people. Festival activities such as dance, concerts, theatre, exhibitions, cultural and art activities bring together people from different ethnic minorities.
 
DAY-MER, as a community centre providing cultural, sport and community activities, has in years re-established itself as the only community centre consistently supporting working people’s struggle.  Since supporting the Liverpool Dockers’ struggle in September 1995, DAY-MER has become more widely recognised by workers’ organisations and trade unions in Britain.
 
The majority of the Turkish and Kurdish community traditionally work in textile industry, kebab and café shops, off-licences and supermarkets deprived of job security; in bad conditions, with low wages, overtime, without any legal rights and the right to unionise. This condemns the community to work and live in an isolated situation from the main community. Turkish/Kurdish factory workers have seen DAY-MER as the place to go to find solutions for their work related and social life problems. DAY-MER provides free advice services in health, education, welfare, accommodation, immigration, housing and interpreting services as well as providing enterprise development support.
 
DAY-MER has grown since its formation in 1989 from a small community centre to become one of the largest and first community centres where people sought help with their language, immigration, education, social and housing problems. 
 
DAY-MER gives great importance to youth issues. It has carried out projects, workshops, seminars on the prevention of drugs. It gives importance to sport activities to strengthen friendship among the youth and pioneers for founding sports clubs and federations. The Turkish and Kurdish Football Federation (TKFF) operating under DAY-MER currently is the biggest sports organisation working within the community. TKFF was set up in 1992 within DAY-MER. It holds tournaments every year on issues such as racism and drugs. It holds cultural events, workshops, trips on related issues. Friendship tournaments are held together with other ethnic minority football clubs. DAY-MER also organises summer camps for youth every year.
 
Besides festivals, DAY-MER organises cultural and art events, panels and seminars to respond to the cultural needs of the community. The "London Street Theatre" which is a DAY-MER initiative has presented various performances. DAY-MER also has a well-established folk dance group performing dances from various regions. The group has been performing in every festivals, events and shows. Along these activities DAY-MER holds guitar and saz classes taught by professional teachers. Computer, English language and Yoga classes are continual part of DAY-MER’s activities.
 
DAY-MER clearly opposes discrimination and racist attacks and aims to fight racism together with other ethnic minorities as well as with British people.
 
DAY-MER’s Annual Arts and Culture Festival, the 17th of which took place in June – July 2007 is the longest running festival in London Borough of Hackney and is a fitting example of harmonious community relations which it advocates and works toward.