THE SYSTEM OF FOODBANKING AND SOCIAL MARKET
The “Social Market” system established in order to enable financially unfortunate citizens to meet their needs and shop without being embarrassed is a very first example. Social Markets gives the opportunity to 4.000 families to shop regularly whithin the limits of their cards filled with credits by the Municipality. Social Markets are located in some of those “District Mansions” which have been designed as health, education, culture and art centers of Beyoğlu Municipality, and reached the number of 13 at the end of 7 years. District Mansions play the function of a place where every year approximatively 8.000 people have the opportunity to receive education, services and where old-young, women, men, people from different groups come together and get socialised.
FOOD BANK SYSTEM
As per Law No. 5179 dated 27.05.2004, food banks are organizations formed by non-profit associations and foundations that collect all kinds of donated foodstuffs or production surpluses, store them under suitable conditions and distribute them to poor people or disaster victims directly or through different aid organizations. With the provision introduced in Law no. 5281 dated 31.12.2004, within the scope of the food banking was extended to include clothing and cleaning and heating materials.
The food banking system acts as an intermediary between financially-unfortunate citizens and real, legal entities including producers, manufacturers and retailers which have surplus foodstuffs, clothing and cleaning and heating materials in their hands that are not put to market for various reasons, thereby contributes to promote the social consciousness regarding the prevention of waste and helps toward an achievement of the social justice. In other words, Food Bank is an institution that conveys the products received from producers and seller as donations to those in need on a healthy and regular basis.
Within this system which was initiated as a small organization in the US in 1967, the items that were produced with packaging flaws, that lost their value due to being surpluses of production or export, or that marked with an approaching expiry date were given to those in need.
The Reason for Establishing Food Banks in Beyoğlu
As it is known, Beyoğlu is a center of attraction known as a tourism, culture, entertainment and shopping base with its bright night lights. It is also a cosmopolite region where different cultures and income groups reside... It is a living space for lower income groups concentrated in Tarlabaşı, Dolapdere and Kasımpaşa and higher income groups in Taksim, Cihangir and Gümüşsuyu. Beyoğlu Municipality aspired to act as a bridge between different income groups living in its territory and considered this very important so as to attain social peace. Therefore, it has kicked off the “Food Banking Project”, through which it would be possible to bring quality service to citizens in need and bring them exactly what they need.
Beyoglu Municipality provides its’ services with the understanding of social Municipality and has started the Social Market system within the scope of the food banking project in collaboration with Turkish Red Crescent İstiklal Branch and Beyoğlu District Governorate’s Social Aid and Fraternity Foundation. Within the scope of the project, all kinds of donations including food items, clothing, cleaning and heating materials have started to be collected from citizens and small or large enterprises located in or out of theBeyoğlu District. The donations are collected on-site by the vehicles of the Beyoğlu Municipality and delivered to the Social Market warehouses. The donations received from the benefactors are distributed to the poor people through social market departments. Donations of goods produced or sourced by companies are accepted in the name of Red Crescent’s İstiklal Branch. A donation acceptance receipt is issued for the donations to the Food Bank and the other legal procedures are followed. Donators are given donation receipts so that they can deduct these from their Corporate or Income Tax bases. The computer system includes a barcode system where numbers registered on each donated items allows to see which family has received which product. This feature allows us to send the list of items donated and the families who received these items from the Social Market and its branches. This provides the transparency of the project. If they want, donators can see and survey on site how the donations are distributed to needy people.
In this social market at where no money is used only the relevant cardholders can shop products.The electronic shopping cards with the limits defined in certain categories according to the conditions of the people in need of aid are delivered to the poor people as determined through the research by the social aid site teams of our Municipality.The credit charging to the shopping cards will be made regularly and automatically.
Branches of Beyoğlu Social Market
Since a single point of shopping for needy Beyoğlu citizens would limit their freedom of shopping at the time of their desire, in line with the social municipality notion and decentralized management, new branches of Beyoğlu Social Market were opened in the areas where financially-unfortunate citizens are concentrated. With Social Market branches, the aim is to offer service to citizens at their closest point and let them meet their demands at once. With this implementation the Social Aid works gained a new dimension.
Dolapdere District Mansion Social Market Branch
Dolapdere District Mansion which opened in December 2007 offers service to citizens living in Tarlabaşı-Dolapdere Region. The Tarlabaşı-Dolapdere region where the mansion is located is an unrestful settlement that was omitted for years and received substantial immigration. The mansion gave life to this area, with low educational level and correspondingly high crime rates, and hosts people coming from different cultures and suffering from severe financial problems.
The clothing section within the mansion that served previously as a clothing store for needy people was rearranged as a branch of the Social Market. The branch that meets all clothing needs of people in the Dolapdere region bears no essential difference from the center. Needy people are given shopping cards as it is the case in the center and it operates on the same principles. The only difference is that this branch does not offer any service in the field of foodstuffs. Citizens living in the area can make their food shopping at the Beyoğlu Social Market operating in the Kasımpaşa Kızılay Square. The lack of food section in this branch is due to the fact that foodstuffs spoil easily and storing conditions are important, as well as the difficulty of monitoring of these items and the limited area of this branch. Dolapdere District Mansion Social Aid Branch also offers Laundry Service, Shower Service and Daily Hot Meal Service under the Directorate of Social Aid Affairs.
Yenişehir District Mansion Social Market Branch
Yenişehir District Mansion which offers service to the surrounding neighborhoods since in 2009, to İstiklal, Hacıahmet and Yenişehir neighborhoods which are among the most problematic areas in Beyoğlu. The opening of Yenişehir District Mansion Social Market in this area which suffers of poverty in economic, social and cultural terms allowed from the general to the local level to create and offer new service models based on the needs of the families. Our branch where people of the area can convey all of their demands and receive all kinds of services, offers service in the clothing section alone due to same reasons valid for Dolapdere District Mansion Social Market. Likewise, shopping cards are used in this branch that works on the same principles. Bringing service to the closest points to the citizens also gives us the chance to see and analyze their problems on site and listen to their problems directly from them. Yenişehir Social Market Branch also offers Laundry Service, Shower Service and Daily Hot Meal Service that are not provided in the center under the Directorate of Social Aid Affairs.
Beyoglu Municipality web site for The System Of Foodbanking and Social Market , please click here.