Founder and Chairperson, Young Lives Foundation (Genc Hayat Vakfı)
Beyza Zapsu is the Founder and Chairperson of the Young Lives Foundation (Genc Hayat Vakfı), an NGO based in Istanbul, the largest and most diverse city in Turkey. The Foundation works to develop various programs and activities for youths between the ages of 11 and 18 that promote a social transformation in which democracy and human rights are entrenched. The focus of the programs is to provide a platform where synergy can be created from differences and where a culture of tolerance and communication can prevail. Currently the central project of the Young Lives Foundation is Correct Communication (Doğru İletişim Projesi) in which the awareness of perception of ‘I’, ‘We’ and ‘Other’ is raised and communication skills are developed. Mrs. Zapsu also gives classes to 30 boys, aged 7-14, in an orphanage in Edirnekapı. In addition she is a thinker, researcher and practitioner of Islamic Sufism. Born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1960, Ms. Zapsu studied at the American College Istanbul and the Richmond College in London. In 1979 she moved to Munich, Germany where she continued her studies. Thirteen years later she moved back to Istanbul where she currently resides with her husband and three daughters.