Dilek Livaneli

Teacher Dilek Changes the Destiny of a Village


Sabanci Foundation Turkey’s Changemakers Program continues in its 6th season to share the unique stories of extraordinary people who contribute to the social development. The 14th Changemaker of the 6th season is Dilek Livaneli.


Dilek Livaneli is in teaching profession since 13 years, the last 6 years of which were in Kumkoy Primary School in Samsun. She undertook many projects in this village school as the teacher, employee and the manager of the school.


Dilek Livaneli practices her profession through teaching four different classes in a single classroom in the village school in Kumkoy. She carries out projects for adults and children living in the village outside of her working hours. Dilek Livaneli started with the “My School Regenerating” project. She transformed a room in the school into a hobby room. She developed tens of project so that her students are better equipped to participate in life. She made her students meet with ice skating, opera, cinema and theater for the first time. She conducted projects not only for her students but also for the people living in Kumkoy. She gave literacy courses for illiterate women in the community. Teacher Dilek founded a shoe atelier with the support of private and public institutions to empower women in the community.


Dilek Livaneli is an idealist teacher. Due to her successful initiatives, she was nominated for the 2015 Global Teacher Prize by Varkey Gems Foundation, the honorary chairman of which is former US president Bill Clinton. She became the first Turkish teacher who was selected among the top 50 teachers in the world.


Dilek Livaneli carried out works for the students in village school so that they do not fall behind of their peers. She conducted projects not only for children, but also for adults. She helped women in Kumkoy develop their self-confidence and gain economic independence. She changed the destiny of a village. She made a big difference in the lives of students at the village school and in the lives of the women living in the village…

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