DVV International’s engagement in Turkey started in 2011 with a framework agreement on cooperation with the Turkish Ministry of Education signed by the long-standing President of the German Adult Education Association, Prof. Dr. Rita Süssmuth. In this agreement, a total of nine key areas of cooperation were identified, including the intensification of knowledge transfer and the promotion of intercultural and inter-religious dialogue between the Turkish public adult education facilities (Halk Eğitim Merkezleri – HEMS) and German adult education centres (Volkshochschulen). Since November 2011, DVV International has carried out adult education projects in Turkey, and from 2012 assumed the task of being responsible for some of these areas of cooperation.
The exchange between German and Turkish adult education institutions forms the main focus of work: DVV International conducts various joint activities with German adult education centres, the Ministry of National Education of the Republic of Turkey and its – subordinate – circa 1,000 Turkish HEMS. Key areas of cooperation are the implementation of joint conferences on current issues of adult education, the concept of Lifelong Learning, mutual assistance in the area of remedial school-leaving certificates and second-chance offers as well as the promotion of cultural and civic education.
Since 2013, DVV International is supporting Syrian refugees in Turkey and cooperates in this area with various Turkish partner organisations.
Since January 2018, the projects of DVV International in Turkey are coordinated by a strategical partner, the non-governmental partner organisation "Beraberce".
The main partner in Turkey is the Department of Lifelong Learning of the Ministry of National Education. Other partners are the public HEMS, which exist in all the cities and districts of Turkey. They are a key source for non-formal education in Turkey and under the control of the Ministry of National Education. All social groups are targeted by the HEMS; in many places there are special offers for disadvantaged groups such as illiterates, people with educational deficits or low-skilled workers.
In the frame of the project "Place for learning and site of memory Hrant Dink" supported by the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, DVV International cooperates with the Hrant Dink Foundation.