Funeral Services Association of Turkey

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Funeral Services Association of Turkey 3rd International Funeral Services Conference

CENHIZDER - Funeral Services Association of Turkey 3rd International Funeral Services Conference, was held on 25th of May 2013 in Golden Horn Hotel in Istanbul, Turkey. CENHIZDER is now operational for 7 years and has arranged three International Conferences.

This year’s program has been prepared by different cities of Turkey (Antalya, İstanbul, Konya, Mugla) and by countries as Belgium, UK, Hungary, Germany and USA. The first (morning) panel of the Conference was focused on the historical approach to the funeral services and was performed by presentations of Turkish Archaeologist ( Grave Specialist) Assistant Profesor Yasemin Yılmaz and on behalf of Association of Tombs Protection, Writer-Researcher Dogan Pur. Asst. Profesor Yasemin Yılmaz presented statements concerning archeological studies in Istanbul. Ms. Yılmaz spook about graveyards, founded in 8000-year-old settlements, and the interesting burial traditions, such as covering a deceased with gypsoplast, for the first time on international level. Writer-Researcher Dogan Pur informed the participants about importance of tombs, preserved till nowadays, and their role in tourism sector.

Second panel brought an opportunity to compare the current system in Turkey with the systems in Europe and USA. General Secretary Mehmet Cetin presented the Funeral Services Association of Turkey and Executive Director Dr. Rolf Lichtner of EFFS and Vice President (International Relations) NFDA Mrs. Deborah Andres did so for their countries.

Third part was dedicated to religious issues with presentations by Zeytinburnu Mufti Yusuf İzzettin Konuk and from Latin Catholic Church in İstanbul Pastor Ruben Tierrablanca Gonzales. This panel caused more polemics as Mufti emphasized that funeral services in Turkey, as a Muslim country, initially were free-of-charge and provided by the governmental and local institutions. This tradition is still valid in many cities, thus makes development of private company in this sector slow and problematic. At this point there were many discussions with contributions of all participants.

The last presentation was made by the speakers from the large funeral and repatriation company DELA in Belgium. Greta Plas and Yven Vanophem shared with participants their experience for management of small-scaled disasters and explained the difficulties they had faced.

All the speakers were rewarded with commemorative plaques, and a new member of CENHIZDER were warmly welcomed and named. Following to the conference, the meeting between CENHIZDER members took place and they discussed the problems they have met and challengers they have to face in this important area.


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