At the 14th Library of Congress National Book Festival held on August 30 in Washington, DC, the Turkish NGO Anne Cocuk Egitim Vakfi (ACEV) - Mother Child Education Foundation, received the International Prize, one of three prizes presented by the 2014 Library of Congress Literacy Awards. As an award winner, ACEV receives a grant of $50,000 to expand its literacy programs. TCA President G. Lincoln McCurdy, representing ACEV President Aysen Ozyegin and CEO Ayla Goksel, received the award from the Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. ACEV, a past TCA grant recipient, was established in Turkey with the belief that equal educational opportunities must be provided for all individuals and that education must begin in early childhood. ACEV has tackled issues of low literacy, women’s status in society and girls’ school attendance. Its programs have made a positive impact for over 140,000 people across 25 provinces in Turkey, teaching fundamental reading and writing skills. Many of the programs of ACEV have been adapted to address similar needs in other countries, including Mexico, as well as several European and Middle Eastern countries.
At this year’s Book Festival, in addition to ACEV’s award, a Turkish American author and a Turkish author were recognized. Former TCAdvance Scholar Andrew Aydin, who serves as digital director and policy advisor to Congressman John Lewis (GA/5th), was recognized as co-author of Representative Lewis’s New York Times best selling graphic memoir trilogy “March.” Aydin had also received the 2014 Robert F. Kennedy Book Award Special Recognition and the 2014 Coretta Scott King Book Award Author Honor. Nur Ilkin, spouse of former Turkish ambassador to the United States Baki Ilkin, was recognized along with her co-author Sheilah Kaufman for “The Turkish Cookbook: Regional Recipes and Stories.” The book provides Turkish recipes influenced by ancient cultures from the various regions in Turkey. Sheila Kaufman, who was also a guest on the Turkish Cultural Foundation’s 2009 Cultural Tour to Turkey, was a featured author at the Book Festival and her lecture on “The Sultan’s Kitchen: A History of Turkish Cuisine” is available as a Library of Congress webcast.
August 30, 2014