Press-release on conference
“Bridge of Social Work, From East to West”, 22-23 August, 2013, Antalya Turkey
On August 22-23, the “Bridge of Social Work: From East to West” took place in Antalya, Turkey. Social workers from eight post-Soviet countries such as Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia and Azerbaijan came together at the conference in Turkey which is the bridge from Asia to Europe.
The conference was an avenue for all Post-Soviet countries which are members of IFSW but belong either to IFSW Europe or IFSW Asia including those post-soviet countries which are not members of IFSW to meet. The conference provided an opportunity for them to meet, share experiences, and discuss their models of social work practice as well as their achievements, challenges and issues in establishment of social work after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The conference was opened with welcoming speeches of Mr. Mustafa Akaydin, the Head of Antalya Metropolitan Municipality and by Mr. Murat Altuggil, Head of Turkish Association of Social Workers. Key note speeches were delivered to conference participants by Ms. Aytakin Husyenli, Executive Director of Azerbaijan Social Work Public Union and Deputy of Executive Committee of IFSW Europe and by Mr. Riza Elitok, Head of Antalya Branch of Turkish Association of Social Workers.
During the conference all participants made presentations about the history, current trends, challenges and future plans of social work in their countries. During the conference Mrs. Salome Namicheishvili, Chair of Georgian Association of Social Workers and Executive Committee Member of IFSW Europe conducted a session on “Social Work Ethics” where she highlighted importance of ethics in practice of social work.
At the end of official part, Ms. Huseynli and Mr. Elitok, carried out an session on the outcomes of the conference. The participants mentioned that this kind of meeting of Post-Soviet countries needs to be continued in the next years since there are a lot of the common in development of social work of these countries. Meanwhile, participants expressed that since all participant countries come from the same background, Soviet background and plus having almost the same speed of development of social work, there are many things to learn from each other.
At the end of the conference, participants were given certificates of participation and gifts by Antalya Metropolitan Municipality. The conference was organized by Antalya Metropolitan Municipality, Antalya Branch of Turkish Social Workers Association and Azerbaijan Social Work Public Union. The conference, such accommodation, food and all social activities were financed by Antalya Metropolitan Municipality.