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Goodwill Ambassador Maxim Vengerov plays in preschool in Istanbul

ISTANBUL, Turkey, 28 October 2013 – UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Maxim Vengerov, a world renowned violinist and conductor, visited the Gülen Üstünel Preschool during his travel to Turkey in order to support the “A Child is in Preschool Education with TL 25 Once A Month” fundraising campaign.

© UNICEF/Turkey/2013/Oghanna

The campaign aims at increasing the enrolment and attendance of disadvantaged children to preschool education and day care institutions and the number of families sending their children to these institutions. The implementation takes place in 10 pilot provinces (Adana, Ağrı, Ankara, Diyarbakır, Erzurum, Hatay, İzmir, Mersin, Şanlıurfa and Van) while awareness building activities takes place nationwide with the participation of public and private sectors, civil society and the media.

“Early childhood is the most significant developmental period of life. Early exposure to educational services is highly beneficial especially for the marginalized in their life achievements,” said Mr. Vengerov. “I am very happy to learn that the campaign has given education opportunity to 12.000 children who were not able to benefit from qualified early childhood education because of financial impossibilities.”

During his school visit, Mr. Vengerov talked to children and answered their questions about the music and UNICEF. Mr. Vengerov also gave a small concert which was listened with great admiration in the preschool.

This evening, Maxim Vengerov will perform at a UNICEF’s preschool campaign benefit concert at Kıbrıslı Mansion. The concert will start at 20.00, and recital partner Vag Papian will accompany Mr. Vengerov in this recital, joined by well-known pianist Gülsin Onay who is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador since 2003.

Widely regarded as one of the world's most dynamic artists, Maestro Maxim Vengerov has performed sold out concerts with eminent orchestras in every major city in the world. On 15 July 1997, the talented violinist and conductor became the first classical musician to be appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.

For his first official UNICEF field visit, he travelled to Bosnia and Herzegovina in December 1997, where he witnessed UNICEF-supported health and water projects. He also played for and with children in music schools around Sarajevo.

Mr Vengerov has seen UNICEF work with children in many countries including Thailand, Uganda and South Africa.  He has also performed benefit concerts for UNICEF in the US and UK and attended musical workshops and master classes with children in Serbia, Kampala and New York.  

Throughout his time as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Mr. Vengerov has generously provided fundraising and advocacy support for UNICEF’s work around the world and helped inspire children through music.

Cost of Preschool Education per Child in Turkey

For a child to benefit from preschool education the average annual spending made by the state is 1,782 TL and by the family is 1,800 TL. Especially in disadvantaged provinces, this figure deters many families from sending their children to preschool education institutions.

In project provinces, 25 TL per month is needed to provide for a child’s needs related to enrolment and attendance to preschool education. This amounts to 300 TL a year. This small contribution is sufficient to provide for health, hygiene, uniform and stationery needs of a child throughout a school year.

For further information or requests, please contact:

Arzum Meleksoy
İstanbul Office Director
UNICEF Turkey National Committee
Tel: 0533 743 27 22

Sema Hosta
Chief of Communications
UNICEF Turkey Country Office
Tel: 0533 622 83 46





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