ZAYDER, translating to Olive Tree Education and Assistance Association, is an exceptionally important charity operating in North Cyprus. The reason, in our opinion, for its importance, is because it operates with such a varied remit. Anyone in need and living in North Cyprus, can receive assistance of some kind, depending on their needs.
The organisation was founded in 2016, with its vision set in becoming a leading institution that contributes to civil society, promoting democracy, along with the aim to increase the quality of life for those that they assist.
Their remit is really quite astounding, which includes dealing with victims of violence against women, the elderly, children, and their families as well as running food and clothing banks. Not a huge list you may think but the amount of diverse ways of assistance offered within these areas is a daunting task.
Any member of the public can require assistance and support for a wide variety of reasons, and financial issues can be one of the main reasons that ZAYDER steps in to help. With anything from helping with medicines and food, they can assist with nappy supplies for babies, clothing, home repairs, hospital treatments and surgeries. They are even able to offer educational lessons in various subjects at their association centre.
Single people, as well as women who have experienced abuse and violence at home, can often require help in many ways. Women can turn to Womens Shelters in North Cyprus for some support and ZAYDER offers additional assistance to women who are getting ready to leave those shelters, wanting to return to a normal life and start afresh.
The organisation also aims to be able to support needy students with scholarship support, helping with the financial and practical implications of buying necessary study materials and stationery. For children also at times, there is also the facility to seek psychological support and even sometimes legal support.
They are able to support the older generation too, perhaps when they have no other family support available to them. ZAYDER can provide cleaning and personal care support, can go shopping as well as providing food support in financial terms. Should an elderly person require aids such as wheelchairs, walking frames or other equipment that can also be sourced. Transportation can be provided for hospital appointments and support for the costs of any treatments or surgeries. House repairs can also be undertaken.
ZAYDER also runs food and clothing banks, with donations from the general public, other non-governmental organisations, state institutions and companies. All donations made are distributed to a network of centres across North Cyprus. Any family or individual registered with ZAYDER is entitled to source what they need from these centres.
All of these valuable services are made possible by a network of volunteers all over North Cyprus. Volunteers are made up of the general public and local tradespeople who feel able to provide time and resources to help those in need. None of this would be possible without the generosity and kindness of others.
ZAYDER has a commitment to continue improving and expanding on their remit with plans and projects in place for increasing their assistance to the community. They intend to open their own women’s shelter, drug rehabilitation centre, an open house for those who need a place to stay, as well as a youth hostel, children’s dormitory, nursing home and further food and clothing banks.
Their work is extensive and they are always looking for people who have some time to spare, as well as continually requiring donations, from food, materials for craft workshops, to cash and services.