|Mehmet Munir Cura (Season 03 - Episode 12)|
Athletes in Mardin are “running” to a better future
This week’s Turkey’s Changemakers features former national athlete Mehmet Munir Cura, who led the ‘Promotion of Athletics in Mardin’ project in Mardin.
Mehmet Munir Cura, a former mountain running athlete who won 3rd place in World Championships and 1st place in Balkan Championships, returned to his hometown Mardin to work as a physical education teacher upon his retirement as an athlete. The former mayor of Mardin, Mehmet Kiliclar, supported Mehmet Munir Cura establish the Mardin Sports Club for Athletics with the goal of taking athletics to the next level in the city of Mardin. The Mardin Sports Club for Athletics, established in 2008, received a grant from the Ministry of Development Social Support Program and brought the ‘Promotion and Popularization of Athletics in Mardin’ project into life.
As part of the project, Mehmet Munir Cura reached a total of 350 students from Mardin’s city centre and surrounding villages since 2008. The Mardin Sports Club for Athletics raised around 120 licensed athletes, and 8 out these athletes now attend a sports academy at the university level. The U-16 Girls, U-16 Boys and U-20 Boys teams established by Mr. Cura now compete in the First Division of Turkey’s National Athletics League. Another outcome of the project was the first running track ever to be built in Mardin. This track also hosted a national competition.
The Mardin Sports Club for Athletics competes in the First Division of Turkey’s Cross League. The Club finished the League’s 2009-2010 season finals organized in Antalya in 8th place with 236 points. In addition, the Club won 1st place among 15 teams at the 76th Great Ataturk Race organized in Ankara.