Turkey’s first alumni association: Darüşşafaka Alumni Association
Darüşşafaka Alumni Association was originally founded under the name of "Darüşşafaka Graduates' Association" on 08 August 1908 by around 150 fellow Darüşşafaka graduates coming together in the historical school building in Fatih, Istanbul with the intention of creating a platform of cooperation, solidarity and communication among fellow Darüşşafaka graduates and donators and friends of heart of Darüşşafaka.
Darüşşafaka Graduates' Association was the first alumni association of the Ottoman Empire and naturally the first of the Republic of Turkey as well, but the purpose underlying its foundation was indeed different from that of an ordinary alumni association, because in the year 1903, when the students showed reaction to express their displeasure and discontent with the school administration, Sultan Abdülhamit thought it was a rebel against him, and therefore, shut down Darüşşafaka Society and put the school under the control of the Ministry of Education. Thereupon, Darüşşafaka Alumni Association was founded and set out to re-establish the Society, take Darüşşafaka from the hands of the Ministry of Education, and restore administrative power to the Society. And these goals were achieved in 1909.
Bringing together the members of Darüşşafaka Family on the basis of shared educational experience and culture, the Association is one of the most active, respectful and notable non-governmental organizations in Turkey. Aiming to enhance Darüşşafaka's recognition, prestige and corporate image to the highest level possible as an educational institution, the Association embraces the historical heritage of Darüşşafaka as well, and is involved in a plenty of cultural and social projects and initiatives, especially in the field of education, for the sake of utilization of the unrivalled historical heritage of Darüşşafaka for social good.