Activities
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Festival :: 5th Annual Turkish Food & Art Festival

Triangle : 05-20-2017

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast in Charlotte

Charlotte : 02-26-2017

What: Divan style breakfast
When: Sunday, Feb 26, 2016 @10:30 AM
Where: Divan Center-Charlotte : 7100 Lawyers Rd. Charlotte, NC 28227

Speaker Series :: Drug Addiction Epidemic in United States

Triangle : 01-28-2017

On January 28th, We were lucky to have Jane E. Albers - The Board President of North Carolina Foundation for Alcohol and Drug Studies - as our speaker in drug addiction awareness seminar. Jane, who has 34-years of practice in the field, shared her experiences with listeners. In her presentation, Jane first emphasized the destructive nature of various substances including opioids, marijuana, and alcohol; then she warned us about the increasing rate of prescribed drug addiction. Jane mentioned the biological impacts of these chemicals on our brain and highlighted the threat of these substances pose to our family and friends. She finished her speech with current treatment modalities pointing out that drug addiction is treatable brain disorder and professional help is always available for patients. After the speech, Jane joined us at our luncheon.

What: Drug Addiction Epidemic in United States: How to protect youth and yourself
Who: Jane E. Albers , President of North Carolina Foundation for Alcohol and Drug Studies
When: Saturday, January 28, 2017 11:00am
Where: Divan Center Triangle - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC 27513

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class of Sep 24

Triangle : 09-24-2016

We enjoyed getting together at the first cooking class of 2016 Fall Term! It was so nice seeing our friends from last year, and making new friends at this session.First of all, we prepared meat loaf which was filled with potatoes, carrots, and peas. We cut the loaf by slices and served with mujaddara. Mujaddara is a middle eastern rice with lentil and garnished with caramelized onions. We prepared our rice with bulgur (cracked wheat) as healthy choice. Caramelized onion on top of the rice made a big difference in taste as well as appearance of our rice.

Finally, We prepared chocolate creamy pudding garnished with coconut and hazelnut. The aroma of lemon in the pudding made it remarkable. This dessert is very refreshing for summer, and it will be the favorite dessert for the little ones.

Art :: Memories of a Senior Dentist and a Young Artist

Triangle : 07-16-2016

What: Solo Art Exhibition
Who: Nevim VanderMeer Wingfield
When: Saturday, July 16, 2016 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Where: Divan Center Triangle - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC 27513

Art :: Fundraising Solo Exhibition - The Secret Lives of Cells

Triangle : 06-04-2016

What: Fundraising Solo Exhibition - The Secret Lives of Cells
Who: Aiperi Yusupova
When: Saturday, May 7, 2016 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Where: Divan Center Triangle - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC 27513


The funds collected by ticket sales and 60% of raised funds from silent auction was donated to Embrace Relief in support of education of Syrian and Iraqi refugees currently residing in Turkey.

The Secret Lives of Cells
As a young girl I was a seeker; a seeker of the natural harmony of order and purpose of worldly life, where we must give things a meaningful form. Indeed, it is through Art I learned to transform physical reality into forms of devotion, compassion, love and enlightenment.

Announcement :: Coffee Night

Charlotte : 05-14-2016

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast in Charlotte

Charlotte : 05-01-2016

It was very nice to hold many community members from different part of the Charlotte. Also, there were 43 community members at our Turkish style breakfast from different nations such as Chinese, Bosnian, Croatian, Hollander, and Mexican with US citizen. The breakfast buffet had multifarious Turkish cuisine resulted in smile on our guests’ face during breakfast. Also, there were many nice and warm conversations between our guests during breakfast. Finally, there are some photos attached to show how magnificent event we had.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class on April 30th

Triangle : 04-30-2016

Speaker Series :: Freedom of the Press, Islam & Democracy

Triad : 04-30-2016

Arzu Kaya-Uranli was in Divan Center-Triad on April 30, 2016 as part of the Divan Speaker Series. Kaya-Uranli talked about Freedom of the Press, Islam & Democracy.

Arzu Kaya-Uranli, is a broadcaster, language studies professor and spiritual mentor currently based in New York, USA. Since 1998, she has worked with many different national TV and radio stations as a correspondent, reporter, anchor woman, director and producer. She currently writes weekly editorial articles for Huffington Post and Today’s Zaman about the heated topics in the USA while concentrating on human rights, education, gender
equality, environmental issues and Turkey in general.

Festival :: 4th Annual Turkish Food & Art Festival

Triangle : 04-24-2016

Divan Center organized Turkish Food & Art Festival on Sunday, April 24th .

What: A Turkish Food & Art festival including many authentic tastes, such as gyro (doner), Turkish ravioli, vegetarian dishes, grilled fish sandwiches, grilled meatballs, Turkish coffee, baklava, and much more.
When: Sunday April 24, 2016 from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Where: Divan Center at 1903 N Harrison Ave, Cary, NC 27513

Announcement :: Turkish Cultural Night

Charlotte : 04-23-2016

36 of community members came together to have fun on last Saturday. We tasted some of specific Turkish cuisine like Cig Kofte and Baklava with our friends. It was very kind to spend time together with nice conservation.

Announcement :: Turkish Cultural Night

Triangle : 04-16-2016


What: Turkish Cultural Night
When: 7:00 pm, April 16th 2016
Where: Divan Center-Triangle - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC 27513

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast in Charlotte

Charlotte : 03-27-2016

What: Divan style breakfast
When: Sunday, Mar 27, 2016 @10:00 AM
Where: Divan Center-Charlotte : 7100 Lawyers Rd. Charlotte, NC 28227

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triangle : 03-26-2016

On the 26th of March Divan Center hosted a traditional Turkish Breakfast. About 50 people attended the breakfast and $220 was raised. Divan Center will donate the raised amount to the Carying Place (www.thecaryingplace.org).

What: Divan style breakfast
When: Saturday March 26, 10am
Where: Divan Center, 1903 N. Harrison Ave. Suite 100, Cary, NC 27513

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class on March 19th

Triangle : 03-19-2016

Announcement :: Movie presentation of Love Is A Verb

Triangle : 03-17-2016

What: Movie presentation of Love Is A Verb
When: Thursday, March 17 6:30PM - 7:30PM
Where: Stone Theatres - Park West Village 14
3400 Village Market Place Dr, Morrisville, NC
$12.00 General

Promoted by Divan Center & Institute of Islamic and Turkish Studies (IITS)

Love Is A Verb is an examination of a social movement of Sufi inspired Muslims that began in Turkey in the 1960s and now reaches across the globe. The group is called Hizmet, the Turkish word for service or The Gulen Movement after its inspiration, leader and beloved teacher Fethullah Gulen, a man that Time Magazine named as one of the most influential leaders in the world in 2013. As it is explained to us in the film by Marcia Hermansen, Director of the Islamic World Studies, Loyola University of Chicago: "This movement is not about individual enlightenment, this is about making the world a better place. But while making the world a better place, at the same time, this altruism is also transformative."

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening 'The White Angel'

Charlotte : 03-12-2016

Divan Center-Charlotte will be hosting a Turkish movie screening: The White Angel (Original Name: Beyaz Melek) on Saturday, March 12, 2015 at 7:00 PM.

What: Turkish Film Screening 'The White Angel'
Where: Divan Center-Charlotte : 7100 Lawyers Rd. Charlotte, NC 28227
When: Saturday 2016-03-12 @7:00pm

Announcement :: Book study and discussion

Triad : 03-06-2016

Divan Center - Triad and Epiphany Presbyterian Church were co-hosted a book study & discussion on March 6th, 2016 using Karen Armstrong's new book Fields of Blood : Religion and the History of Violence.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class on March 5th

Triangle : 03-05-2016

This week we prepared three health friendly recipes in our cooking class. We hosted sixteen skillful friends around the table to share our recipes. First recipe was kale soup with pinto bean and sweet corn. This was the most popular soup of our cooking classes so far. It was very easy to make and took less time. The second recipe was salad. We shredded celery roots, carrots and couple gloves of garlic, mixed them together with mayonnaise and homemade yogurt. Flavor was strong and tasted just great! Our last recipe was rice with minced beef. This is a very traditional recipe for the weddings in a small city of Turkey. It is called "etli pilav".

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triangle : 02-28-2016

What: Divan style breakfast
When: Sunday, Feb 28, 2016 @10:00 AM
Where: Divan Center - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening - Vizontele in Charlotte

Charlotte : 02-27-2016

Divan Center - Charlotte will be hosting a Turkish movie screening: Vizontele with English Subtitle at Divan Center-Triangle.

What: Vizontele
When: Saturday, Feb 27, 2016 @7:00 PM
Where: Divan Center Charlotte - 7100 Lawyers Rd Charlotte, NC, 28227
RSVP: charlotte@divancenter.org

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Charlotte : 02-21-2016

Divan Center - Charlotte organized Divan style breakfast to strengthen bonds among community. More than 50 attendees enjoyed having this special breakfast and drinking Turkish tea.

What: Divan style breakfast in Charlotte
When: Sunday, Feb 21, 2016 @10:00 AM
Where: Divan Center Charlotte - 7100 Lawyers Rd Charlotte, NC, 28227

Cooking Class :: Sultan liked it, so did we!

Triangle : 02-20-2016

Our menu was Hunkar Begendi (Sultan's Delight), Sebzeli Bulgur Pilavi (Bulgur Pilaf with vegetables) and Rolled cake. Hunkar Begendi, which literately translates, as "the Sultan liked it" is lamb/beef stew served on a bed of creamy roasted eggplant puree. First we started to cook the beef stew. We let the stew change their color & absorb their water, then added onions & tomato paste, stir a bit more then added the water and left it to simmer about an hour. Meanwhile we grilled the eggplants and set aside for cooling. We started baking our cake. The fun part was making a giraffe pattern with the batter! While the cake is cooling we prepared the delicious cream for filling. We put the cream & bananas on the cake and rolled it. It came out so pretty! Our last step was to cook bulgur pilaf and prepare the eggplant pure. Our chefs’ added complimentary refreshing salad to the menu for making it a feast! We enjoyed the food with friendly conversations at the table.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening - Vizontele

Triangle : 02-06-2016

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: Vizontele with English Subtitle at Divan Center-Triangle.

What: Vizontele
When: Saturday, Feb 6, 2016 @7:00 PM
Where: Divan Center - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC

Cooking Class :: Wedding Rice and more!

Triangle : 02-06-2016

Wedding Rice and more!

We prepared Drape Pilaf (Perde Pilavi), Pinto beans in Olive Oil (Barbunya Pilaki), and Meringue Cake. We started with the dessert first. Meringue cake is very easy to make and with the meringue layer, it is rich in taste. We bake it in a large tray, and then cut it into half. We put whipped cream in between two layers.

Our second dish was the vegetarian pinto or cranberry beans. Our cook soaked the beans overnight. The beans are cooked with onion, garlic, tomato paste, and tomatoes in olive oil. It is served in room temperature garnished with parsley and lemon wedges. The drape pilaf from south eastern region is served mostly in weddings. It contains chicken, pine nuts, currants enveloped in a thin layer of dough, topped with almonds. The pilaf has a shape similar to a cake and is then served in slices.

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triangle : 01-30-2016

Divan Center - Triangle organized Divan style breakfast to strengthen bonds among community. Attendees enjoyed having this special breakfast and drinking Turkish tea.

What: Divan style breakfast
When: Saturday, Jan 30, 2016 @10:00 AM
Where: Divan Center - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC

Cooking Class :: Cooking Classes on Jan 30

Triangle : 01-30-2016

What a Start!
We were very busy this week. We made sheet pastry from scratch. First off, the dough was made out of flour, water, salt, and olive oil. We stretched the dough so much that it became transparent. Even our attendees did a great job extending the dough and stuffing it with either potato or eggplant stuffing. We rolled the dough and made circles glazed with olive oil. Secondly, we made Ezo bride soup with the main ingredients being bulgur and red lentils. The origin of the soup is the city known as Gaziantep, in Southeastern Turkey. The soup was one of the best winter soups because of the flavor of spices and richness. Everybody loved it so much that we finished it very quickly. Semolina halva, our dessert, was the best way to finish our lunch. The ice cream in the middle of the halva served with cinnamon made it very special.

Cooking Class :: End of Fall Term Celebration

Triangle : 12-12-2015

After seven classes, we finalized the fall term by celebrating a small party. We went over each class and menus while observing the pictures from the divan website. Then, we played a Kahoot quiz about our menus and ingredients of the fall term. The fall term was very rich and tasteful. Hasanpasa Kofte, Cig Kofte, Pen Borek, Lentil Soup, Rumi Pilaf, Stuffed Peppers, Imam bayildi, Hummus, and tatziki were some of the highlights of this season. The quiz was very competitive but everyone won a box of Turkish delights at the end.

Voluntary :: Syrian Refugees Blanket & Coat Drive

Triangle : 12-05-2015

Dear Friends of Divan Center,

Thank you so much for helping with the blanket&coat drive for the Syrian Refugees in Turkey. On Sunday December 6th, with the help of volunteers we packed all the blankets and coats in a 24 foot truck and shipped to ATFA in Fairfax, VA. The donations will be transported to Turkey by Embrace Relief.

This year's drive was a great success. We collected 1681 blankets and 2384 coats.

Thank you so much for all the help.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Classes on Dec 5

Triangle : 12-05-2015

This week we learned how to make very traditional Mediterranean soup, red lentil soup. Because of it's healthy ingredients, amazing taste and short cooking time, it is preferred as number one soup in our kitchens. We used pressure cooker to make the time even shorter. Lentil is a natural source of high protein. It decreases the bad cholesterol level in the blood therefore, it is very heart friendly food. Secondly, we made Hasanpasa meatball with mashed potato in the oven. It looked very fancy with the tomato paste and sprinkled cheese on top of it. And the last thing we cooked was rice. Rice is a must of everyday cooking in the Mediterranean kitchen. It is usually served as a side dish with a main dish. Next week we will be celebrating the last class of the season. Therefore there will be no cooking but eating!

Media :: TheNews&Observer--Triangle interfaith effort will go on despite terror

Triangle : 12-04-2015

BY NED BARNETT

Faith is often strong, but the ties between faiths are often weak.

Last Tuesday, several Protestant ministers and Triangle Muslims came to The News & Observer editorial office to talk about their efforts to strengthen the tenuous and threatened connections between Muslims, Christians, Jews and those of other beliefs.

On Wednesday, heavily armed, masked shooters burst into a holiday gathering of county health workers in San Bernardino, leaving 14 dead and 21 wounded. The suspects, husband and wife, later were killed in a shootout with police. As new information unmasked the shooters, they were identified as Muslims who supported the terror of the Islamic State.

And with that, the shooting wounded another victim - interfaith understanding.

Media :: An interview with Dr. Chirsty Lohr Sapp from Duke University on Hizmet Movement

Triangle : 12-03-2015

An interview with Dr. Chirsty Lohr Sapp from Duke University on Hizmet Movement & Fethullah Gulen


Get the Flash Player to see this video.





Speaker Series :: Recent political developments in Middle East

Triangle : 12-01-2015

What: Recent political developments in Middle East
When: Tuesday, December 1st, 2015
Where: Divan Center - Triangle

Middle East has been at the epicenter of an ongoing international crisis for a long time. Recent regime changes in Iraq and Egypt and several other countries followed by the civil war in Syria led to political instability in the region. The ISIS violence and mass flow of refugees have impact beyond the geographical boundaries of the region. In this talk Mr Kerim Balci, a journalist and a specialist in Middle East Politics provided detailed information about the current status of the crisis.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Week 3, Nowember 28,2015

Charlotte : 11-28-2015

This week's chefs Nazan and Celile shared and demonstrated their special recipes. They prepared Karniyarik (stuffed eggplants), cacik (yogurt and cucumber salad), mosaic cake and bulgur pilaf. Karniyarik is a traditional Turkish dish consisting of eggplant stuffed with a mix of sautéed chopped onions, garlic, black pepper, tomatoes, parsley and ground meat. The white biscuits form a mosaic-like pattern inside the chocolate, hence it's name as mosaic cake. It's great for kids parties and all sorts of entertaining, as well as the simplest family meal.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Classes on Nov 21

Triangle : 11-21-2015

This time, we prepared very practical and delicious menu. It took only one and a half hour to prepare all three. First, we cooked chicken veggie saute.This meal is usually served with rice pilaf or bulgur pilaf as a dinner or a lunch menu. Most important spices of the sauté are cumin and black pepper. Secondly, we made colorful and very healthy kidney bean salad. You would find a little bit of many vegetable. You may be surprised by the little pickles but they added marvelous taste to this simple salad. Finally, we made cigar borek staffed with feta cheese and parsley.

Media :: TheNews&Observer--On Islam, irrationality and interfaith dialogue

Triangle : 11-21-2015

BY JEFFERY P. BRADEN

My wife often looks at the paper, hears a story on the news or learns of an event involving people doing something stupid, turns to me and says, “What the heck were they thinking?” I remind her that if people were rational all the time, I’d be out of a job. I’m a college dean – and I’m a psychologist. Neither job would be necessary if everybody always thought and acted in a rational manner.

But they don’t. And I’m not talking about those exceptionally disturbed individuals whose insanity is as obvious as it is sad. I’m talking about people who have positive and productive lives, raise families, hold jobs and contribute to their communities. In other words, I’m talking about us. Even the best of us succumb to irrational beliefs, and even worse act on them.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Week 2, November 21, 2015

Charlotte : 11-21-2015

This week's chefs Nazan and Celile shared and demonstrated their special recipes. They prepared Okra with meat, Rice, Semolina dessert with ice cream, and red cabbage salad. Okra with meat is a delicious dish for okra lovers. You can totally ignore the meat if you are a vegetarian. Both ways the recipe will bring you a delicious taste. If you have kids, you may want to buy small okras that look nicer, and less squishy when you cook.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Classes on Nov 14

Charlotte : 11-14-2015

This week's chefs Nazan and Celile shared and demonstrated their special recipes.They prepared stuffed grape leaves, and stuffed bell peppers. Grape leaves and bell peppers were stuffed with rice, onion, tomato paste, parsley and olive oil. The presentation of stuffed grape leaves with Greek yogurt was wonderful, and mouth-watering.

Announcement :: Divan Center Strongly Condemns the Terrorist Attacks in Paris

Triangle : 11-13-2015

Divan Center condemns the terrorist attacks in Paris. Our thoughts are with the people of France and our prayers with the families of the deceased and injured. We must all honor the victims by hardening our commitment to spreading peace, tolerance and mutual respect.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Nov7

Triangle : 11-07-2015

This week's chef Ilknur shared and demonstrated her special recipes. First of all, we prepared the stuffed eggplant. The fried eggplants were stuffed with garlic, onion, pepper and tomatoes. Especially, 3-4 garlic for each eggplant made a big difference in taste. We ate extra leftover stuffing with bread and enjoyed it a lot.

Our second dish was the spinach pastry with feta cheese and onion. The rose shape of pastry was very unique and easy to serve. Lastly, we made hummus from scratch. Our chef Ilknur did not recommend to use the canned chickpeas. We mashed chickpeas, tahini, garlic and spices. The creamy texture of hummus was perfect as well as its taste.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Oct 24

Triangle : 10-24-2015

Last week we had another full of fun and well-tasted cooking class. We made three easy and special recipes from the Mediterranean kitchen. We began preparing our meat filling for stuffing the peppers. This time our students are also worked very hard to help chief. Different kinds and colorful stuffed peppers looked so yummy in the pot. While they were cooking we started preparing our yogurt, cucumber and mint mixture ( called cacik) to serve together with our peppers. We kept cacik in the refrigerator and it was served cool. Lastly, we completed our meal with a delicious dessert called irmik tatlisi. This is very simple and tasty recipe that can be served with tea for afternoon gatherings.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening - Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller)

Triangle : 10-10-2015

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller) with English Subtitle on Saturday, October 10, 2015 @7:00 PM at Divan Center-Triangle.

What: Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller)
When: Saturday, October 10, 2015 @7:00 PM
Where: Divan Center - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Oct 10

Triangle : 10-10-2015

Chef Umit proved that he is not only a good cook, but also a good teacher and story teller. What a class!

He started with demonstrating his technique on finely chopping the onions for the lima beans. Once the lima beans was on the stove, he switched to preparing the butter cookies. Right away, our attendees noticed the similarities between this cookie recipe and traditional wedding cookies. Once the cookie dough was ready, it was laid to rest (only for some time of course :-P ) and Chef Umit's focus was shifted to the "Cig Kofte". Again, our sharp guests started questioning the difference between this recipe and the "mercimek kofte" which was presented last season. Although the end products look similar, the ingredients (bulgur vs lentils) and preparation gave each a distinct texture and taste.

Cooking Class :: Eid dish

Triangle : 09-26-2015

This week's cooking class was special for Eid. We started with fresh green beans in extra virgin olive oil. Adding tomatoes, onion, garlic and pepper, it turned out to be a very delicious vegetarian dish to serve in room temperature. We then cooked a traditional Eid dish, Lamb stew, and kavurma, which is an authentic Ottoman cuisine dish. We added lemon juice, onion and some oregano to lamb. We used slow cooking in order to avoid adding liquid. It was done in 90 minutes.

Voluntary :: Helping Hand to Refugee Families

Triad : 09-26-2015

Turkish-American community of Divan Center recently celebrated Eid Al-Adha (feast of sacrifice). The Eid Al-Adha is an important four-day religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide to honor Abraham's obedience to God. Muslims commemorate Abraham's ultimate act of sacrifice every year during Eid Al-Adha by themselves sacrificing an animal such as a sheep, cow, or goat. The Eid Al-Adha is a time of reflection, sacrifice, charity, and family. The meat from the sacrifice of Eid al-Adha is mostly shared with friends, family, and the community at large.

Speaker Series :: Maker & STEM Education

Triangle : 09-19-2015

The talk focused on the bridging of hands-on and minds-on teaching and learning. Much of this is found in the grassroots Maker movement. The philosophies and practices that surround the Maker movement in education was explored.

Matthew Lammi’s career passion is student learning in engineering; whether that is teaching engineering or engaging in research that improves engineering education. Therefore, he left the wireless and IT industry after eight years as an RF engineer and project manager to pursue a career in academia. He is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of STEM Education at NC State. His research and teaching centers on the engineering design habits of mind and practice including: modeling, problem formulation, and systems thinking.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class Sep 12

Triangle : 09-12-2015

Our cooking classes have started and here is the reflections from one of the participants;

I recently joined the cooking class offered by Divan Cultural Center. It was very nice and a lot of fun to be a part of this cooking class I thought. Even though it required many effort and time, it was well worth it. Many friends, some are new some are known for years gathered around the table and shared our smiles. Most of them had visited Turkey already and some had plans to go. We felt somehow related to each other and I just realized that even one common interest, cooking, can make life long friendship.

We made milky desert with kadayif on top, stuffed dough with feta cheese/meat and one of the healthiest and most delicious soup, broccoli. Our chef was very skillful ,dough in her hand looked just a playdough she played everyday and I was sure her husband was not the skinniest person in the World. We put our hand to work and this made the learning and keeping the process in our mind much easier. We agreed to make these at home the next day at the latest so it would become our own recipe. I thought this creamy thing we made for the dessert and the soup was very tasty. I noticed that the mankind can be extraordinarily creative when it comes to eating. We did not skip the fresh tea made in fancy Turkish teapot with our desert at the end. I thought this combination of the food would be the favorite recipe for my guests. We already set our calendar for the next class!

Art :: Friendship Flowers on Water Exhibition

Triangle : 08-29-2015

Friendship Flowers on Water
August 29 Saturday 1:00-3:00 pm (Opening Reception)

Exhibition will also be open on the following days
September 3 Thursday 12:00-2:00 pm
September 5 Saturday 1:00-3:00 pm
September 10 Thursday 12:00-2:00 pm
September 12 Saturday 1:00-3:00 pm
September 17 Thursday 12:00-2:00 pm
September 19 Saturday 1:00-3:00 pm
September 24 Thursday 12:00-2:00 pm
September 26 Saturday 1:00-3:00 pm

Venue: 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC - Map
RSVP: click here or rsvp@divancenter.org

Divan Center, Cary announces the exhibition Friendship Flowers on Water, works of South Korean and Turkish artists featuring literati painting, oil painting, and Kaat'i, the art of stenciling intricate designs with Turkish water marbled, Ebru, papers.

Media :: WSJ--Muslims Must Combat the Extremist Cancer

Triangle : 08-27-2015

Speaker Series :: What to do if my child is having difficulties in school

Triangle : 08-22-2015

Dr. Carol Vatz, was in Divan Center on Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 as part of the Divan Speaker Series. We all want our children to be successful in whatever they do. It can come as a surprise, therefore, when we hear that our child is struggling in some area in school. On the other hand, some of us have children with some form of developmental disability or handicap and we are constantly trying to figure out how to address these issues. In either case, what can we do?

Dinner :: Ramadan Tent

Triangle : 07-10-2015

Divan Center organized the traditional Ramadan iftar dinner tent on July 10-11 in Cary Towne Center Shopping Mall parking lot this year. Traditional Turkish dishes including Doner Kebap and Baklava were served to the guests. These iftar events attracted around 300 people from different ethnic and religious groups daily. For the attending kids, we organized face painting, cotton candy, and popcorn stands, and built a playground in the tent area. These activities helped to increase the participation and make this year's event colorful for the attendees, both literally and figuratively.

Divan Center plans to continue organization of the now traditional Ramadan Iftar Dinner Tent in the coming years as well, and we welcome the participation of the community in this event.

Screening :: Turkish Movie Screening "Selam"

Triangle : 06-06-2015

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: "Selam" with English subtitles on Jun 6, 2015 at 8:00 pm at Divan Center.

What: Turkish Movie Screening "Selam"
When: Jun 6, 2015 at 8:00 pm
Where: Divan Center - 1903 N. Harrison Avenue Suite 100 Cary, NC

It is a movie of stories based on true events that have been in progress for more than 20 years in which a number of young people in love of peace and humanity have left their countries to teach, help and live in foreign countries that they have had never heard of before.

Breakfast :: Blanket Drive Breakfast

Triangle : 05-23-2015

As you know Divan Center organized a blanket drive last November to help the Syrian refugees in Turkey. More than 500 blankets were collected during this drive. The blankets were shipped to Turkey and distributed to those in need late last year in time for the winter months. We would like to thank everyone for their support and contribution.

We organized Turkish style breakfast on May 23 @10:00am at Divan Center in Cary to provide more information about this blanket drive and to share about the situation of the refugees in Turkey.

Cooking Class :: A unique desert with special ingredient - black pepper

Triangle : 05-16-2015

By using a stand mixer bulgur, herbs and spices were crushed into a favorite Turkish snack and a specialty of southeastern Turkey, ciğ kofte (Turkish pronunciation: [ˌtʃiː cofte]). Isot, a very dark, almost blackish paprika, prepared in a special manner used in ciğ kofte was very interesting to everybody.

We made a dessert called 'Laz boreği' (LAHZ' buer-EY'-ee), a recipe from Eastern Black Sea Region of Turkey It is like a baklava filled with delightfully tasty vanilla pudding instead of nuts and it is unique because of an unusual ingredient for a desert-black pepper.Waiting for it to be done was not very easy because of great smell coming from the oven during baking.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening - Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller)

Triangle : 05-04-2015

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller) with English Subtitle on Monday, May 4, 2015 @7:00 PM in Witherspoon Student Center Cinema, NCSU.

What: Two Hearts As One (Birleşen Gönüller)
When: Monday, May 4, 2015 @7:00 PM
Where: Witherspoon Student Center Cinema, NCSU
2810 Cates Ave Raleigh, NC 27606 Directions

Voluntary :: Habitat for Humanity of Wake County

Triangle : 05-03-2015

Members of the Divan Center volunteered with Habitat for Humanity of Wake County and helped them in framing construction work at the Augusta Crossings, Raleigh construction site.

Habitat for Humanity of Wake County builds safe, affordable houses for qualified homebuyers regardless of race, religion or background. Each Habitat home is built in partnership with homeowner families, sponsors, and volunteers. Our houses are safe, decent, affordable homes which are sold for no profit to the partner family who repays an affordable mortgage over 20 years. Homeowners attend a series of workshops on financial literacy and home maintenance so they are well prepared to be homeowners.

Cooking Class :: This week we prepared three great dishes

Triangle : 05-02-2015

This week we prepared three great dishes: Pogaca (Chees Bread), Eksili Kofte (Meatballs in Sour Sauce), and Azerbaijan style Green Beans Salad.

Green Beans Salad is very easy to make and it is a healthy addition to any main dish or soup. It also could be served as an apperitizer or with a sandwich. The simple dressing from garlic, vinegar and parsley enhance greatly the modest test of the string beans. You may substitute apple cider vinegar with red vine vinegar or play around the choice of herbs. The salad may be prepared ahead of the time or just before the serving.

Dinner :: Inaugural ACT (Aspiring Change Together) Dinner

Triad : 04-20-2015

The Divan Center (Piedmont Triad Chapter) and the UNCG LISSA (Library and Information Studies Student Association) co-sponsored the inaugural ACT (Aspiring Change Together) Dinner on April 20. This fundraising dinner was a collaborative and community-engaged initiative to benefit the Glenwood Branch Library in Greensboro. Dr. Omar Ali, an Associate Professor of Comparative African Diaspora History at UNCG, served as master of ceremonies.

Steve Sumerford, retired assistant director of the Greensboro Public Library, talked in his keynote address about how Mahatma Gandhi's "Constructive Program" motivated him to work in libraries and highlighted libraries' role in furthering social justice and enhancing equity in access to information. Mr. Sumerford has served his community for 25 years managing two branches and procuring grants to support literacy and diversity programs. He started the One City One Book initiative which reached thousands of readers across Greensboro.

Festival :: Turkish food festival to build three water wells in Africa

Triangle : 04-19-2015

It did not matter if it was sunny, windy, or rainy on Sunday. Hundreds of people showed up for the Turkish Food Festival, which was organized by Divan Center and IITS to raise funds for building clean water wells in Africa. A wide variety of foods from Turkish cuisine were offered in the event. Some of the popular items included gyro (doner), Turkish ravioli (manti), grilled kebabs, Turkish coffee, and baklava. Proceeds of the event, a total of $6,070, was donated to Embrace Relief, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that brings together teams of volunteers to collaborate on humanitarian aid and disaster relief. The first of the three wells planned for this year, was built in Kilee, Kenya. This well was dedicated to "our three winners," Deah, Yusor, and Razan, the victims of the Chapel Hill shooting.


Voluntary :: Water Well in Africa #wells4our3winners

Triangle : 04-18-2015

We would like to thank all the community members who supported our fundraising initiative to help build three water wells in Kenya. In partnership with Embrace Relief -a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides humanitarian aid and disaster relief around the world-Divan Center is hoping to provide access to clean water for some communities in Kenya.

As a part of our fundraising efforts, Divan Center and IITS organized a Turkish Food Festival to raise funds to build the water wells. A wide variety of food from Turkish cuisine were offered in the event. Proceeds of the event, a total of $6,070, was donated to Embrace Relief. More information about the festival is available here.

Cooking Class :: Three authentic dishes

Triangle : 04-11-2015

This week we prepared three authentic dishes: Zeytinyagli Sarma (vegetarian Stuffed Grape Leaves), Ezme Kebap (Smashed Kebab), and Azerbaijan style Apple Cake. Apple cake from the Azerbaijan cuisine is fluffy and light which is also simple to make. It would be very good with a cup of coffee in the morning or with a scoop of ice cream on top of it. The cake thrilled us especially when the cook was powdering the cinnamon and sugar just before serving.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening 'My Father and My Son'

Triad : 04-11-2015

Divan Center-TRIAD hosted a Turkish movie screening: My Father and My Son (Original Name: Babam ve Oglum) on April 11th, 2015 at 8:00 pm.

My Father and My Son is a 2005 Turkish drama film written and directed by Cağan Irmak about a family torn apart by the 1980 Turkish coup d'etat. The film which went on nation-wide release on November 18, 2005 became one of the highest-grossing Turkish films in history.


Screening :: Documentary Screening - Love is a Verb at UNC

Triangle : 04-07-2015

Divan Center hosted the screening of a new documentary on the Gulen Movement on Apr 7th at UNC.

Love is a Verb is an examination of a social movement that began in Turkey in the 1960s
and now reaches across the globe. The group is called Hizmet, the Turkish word for
service or The Gulen Movement after its inspiration, leader and beloved teacher
Fethullah Gulen, a man that Time Magazine named as one of the most influential leaders
in the world in 2013.

Please visit www.loveisaverbmovie.com for more information about the documentary and to watch the trailer.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening 'The White Angel'

Triangle : 03-28-2015

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: The White Angel (Original Name: Beyaz Melek) on Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 8:00 PM.

This debut film written and directed by musician Mahsun Kırmızıgul is a touching drama about 'old age' and the varying social experiences of aging individuals in Istanbul and Southeast Turkey. The journey made by Mala Ahmet, his sons Reşat and Ali, and a motley group of nursing home residents becomes a journey into the heart of the country and its people.

Celebration :: Nowruz Celebration

Triangle : 03-21-2015

Nowruz was celebrated on March 21st, 2015 at Divan Center. A PowerPoint presentation explaining the history of Nowruz was given. There was also a brief mention on the main traditional meals. Guests from across the triangle attended and enjoyed the celebration with delicious food.

Cooking Class :: Rumi Pilaf & Chicken rolls with Pastrami

Triangle : 03-21-2015

This week's special was the Rumi Pilaf with a variety of ingredients and the Chicken rolls with Pastrami. The Pastrami was a new taste for the participants. Pastrami is a highly seasoned, air-dried cured beef. It is covered with a cumin paste called cemen prepared with crushed cumin, fenugreek, garlic, and hot paprika, followed by air-drying. The pastrami's strong flavor gave delicious taste to the chicken breast with bechamel sauce. The Rumi bulgur pilaf flavored with pine nuts, carrots, onion, currants, chickpeas, and cinnamon was rich and tasteful as well. Garnishing the pilaf with roasted almonds and parsley was the final touch before presenting to our participants.

Voluntary :: Habitat for Humanity of Wake County

Triangle : 03-14-2015

Members of the Divan Center volunteered with Habitat for Humanity of Wake County and helped them in framing construction work at the Augusta Crossings, Raleigh construction site.

Speaker Series :: Modern Chinese History and Religious Landscape

Triad : 03-08-2015

Dr. Zhihong Chen gave a presentation titled " From the "Sick Man of the East Asia" to an "Awakened Lion": Modern Chinese History and Religious Landscape on the 8th of March, 2015, in Divan Center. In this seminar the topics were modern Chinese History and Chinese Muslims. Dr. Chen presented brief modern Chinese History and government, and spoke about how it is relevant to Chinese Muslims.

Dr. Zhihong Chen is currently an Associate Professor of History at Guilford College. She teaches East Asian history. Her research interests include frontier studies in Chinese history, geography, and ethnicity.

Cooking Class :: Another cooking class with great dishes

Triangle : 03-07-2015

Another cooking class with great dishes pleased Turkish food lovers. Ozbek manti cooked in special multiple layers pot was a hit. Nobody could resist this unique taste sauced with tomatoes. Turkish style Tiramisu was finished so quickly the moment it got out of fridge. Turkish cherry juice brought by a participant made everybody happy. Lovely conversations around the delicious food kept 19 people busy for about 3 hours.

Screening :: Turkish Film Screening 'My Father and My Son'

Triangle : 02-28-2015

Divan Center hosted a Turkish movie screening: My Father and My Son (Original Name: Babam ve Oglum) on February 28th at 6:30 pm.

My Father and My Son is a 2005 Turkish drama film written and directed by Cağan Irmak about a family torn apart by the 1980 Turkish coup d'etat. The film which went on nation-wide release on November 18, 2005 became one of the highest-grossing Turkish films in history.

Cooking Class :: 3 delicious classic Turkish dishes

Triangle : 02-21-2015

Today we've learned 3 delicious classic Turkish dishes. Eggplant musakka, pilaf and baklava. We worked in parallel to make the dishes in time. We first put the meat in pressure cooker while we started rolling our baklava. Some of our students did a good job rolling it! We add the syrup after cooling and it turned out amazingly crunchy and delicious! Our participants watched carefully how to prepare Eggplant musakka and they said it would be the first time they taste it. Everybody seemed pleased with the result!

Announcement :: Statement on Chapel Hill Shootings

Triangle : 02-11-2015

Divan Center strongly condemns the slaying of the three Muslim students in Chapel Hill, NC. It is heartbreaking to see the loss of young, innocent lives and to see the assault on peace and tolerance we so much cherish in the U.S. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the deceased.

Cooking Class :: First Class of Spring Semester

Triangle : 02-07-2015

The first lesson of the Spring Turkish Cooking Class was very active for both participants and teachers. The whole class worked really hard in order to complete gozlemes with potato, ground beef, spinach, and feta cheese stuffing on time, and they managed to do it. Even the participants rolled the dough and filled in the gozlemes with their favorite stuffings. The butter glazing added amazing taste to the gozleme. The class picked the potato gozleme as their favorite.

Announcement :: Peygamber Yolu Etkinlikleri

Triangle : 01-31-2015

Turkish community in North Carolina came together to commemorate Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) on Saturday, January 31st at Carboro High School in Chapel Hill. Program was organized by Divan Center & IITS-NC and started with the Qur'an recitation. The musician and the composer Ertugrul Erkisi contributed with nasheeds from Turkish classical music. After a brief talk about Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), Mr. Erkisi and his wife musician Aslihan Erkisi performed a duet for the guests. The children's choir was also accompanied for several songs. Mr. and Mrs. Erkisi signed their albums at the end of the program.

Screening :: Documentary Screening - Love is a Verb

Triangle : 01-13-2015

Divan Center hosted the screening of a new documentary on the
Gulen Movement on January 13th @6:00pm at Duke Bryan Center,Griffith Theater
with participation of Kenneth Hunter, Executive Producer and Hakan Berberoglu, Co-Producer.

Love is a Verb is an examination of a social movement that began in Turkey in the 1960s
and now reaches across the globe. The group is called Hizmet, the Turkish word for
service or The Gulen Movement after its inspiration, leader and beloved teacher
Fethullah Gulen, a man that Time Magazine named as one of the most influential leaders
in the world in 2013.

Please visit www.loveisaverbmovie.com for more information about the documentary and to watch the trailer.

Announcement :: Divan Center Strongly Condemns the Terrorist Attack in Paris

Triangle : 01-07-2015

Divan Center condemns the terrorist attack on French magazine Charlie Hebdo in the strongest terms. Such horrific actions represent an assault on democratic values and can never be justified no matter the underlying reason. Even against insults, the befitting response must always be legal and civil.

Our thoughts are with the people of France and our prayers with the families of the deceased and injured. We must all honor the victims by hardening our commitment to spreading peace, tolerance and mutual respect.

-Divan Center

Announcement :: STATEMENT ON JOURNALISTS ARRESTS IN TURKEY

Triangle : 12-14-2014

Cooking Class :: Last Cooking Class of Fall Semester

Triangle : 12-06-2014

The Fall Cooking Classes' last lesson had Turkish-style breakfast on the menu. We have been waiting for this class for a long time, since we were all eager to learn how to make simit: Turkish sesame roll breads. Simit is a pastry that you can find anytime and anywhere in Turkey. It is sold on the streets and also in the bakeries. It goes well with anything, especially at the breakfast with feta cheese and tomatoes. We learned how to prepare the simit at this class: from dough preparation to boiling in molasses, covering with sesame seeds, rolling the dough and baking. In addition to simit, we also learned how to make menemen: Turkish style scrambled eggs with vegetables. At this class, there was one more special, and that was Turkish tea. Our teacher showed us how to brew loose Turkish tea leaves, and taught us how to use the Turkish teapot set.

Voluntary :: Blanket Drive to help Syrian Refugees

Triangle : 11-22-2014

Divan Center has organized a "blanket drive" to help Syrian families in Turkey. As you know there are more than a million Syrian refugees in Turkey. Many of these families are living without any shelter or in tents. As the winter is approaching refugee families suffer badly in cold weather. A small donation could help these families significantly.

We accepted both gently used blankets and monetary donations.

Cooking Class :: A Delicious Meal

Triangle : 11-15-2014

This week at the cooking class, we had a full class. Everyone was eager to learn new Turkish recipes.

At first, we prepared a regional dish from the city of Erzurum (an eastern city in Turkey), the dish in Turkish is called sulu as or sulu kofte: meatballs in tomato sauce. In addition to regular meatball ingredients, we also added bulgur and rice, then our teacher had us make round meatballs. Those were boiled in tomato sauce with potatoes. We then prepared a yogurt salad with celery root. For most of us, it was the first celery root dish that we were preparing. Last but not least we prepared cigar/pencil borek. This borek is one of the most popular boreks in Turkey. Our teachers showed us how to make the cigar boreks, and let all of us prepare the boreks. In 5-10 minutes, we had cigar boreks with cheese filling and ground beef filling.

Media :: WRAL--Cary group holds blanket drive to keep Syrian refugees warm

Triangle : 11-10-2014

CARY, N.C. - The local Turkish-American community has organized efforts to collect blankets to keep warm this winter more than a million Syrian refugees in Turkey.

The Divan Center in Cary is collecting both new and used blankets and plans to ship them to Turkey, where local relief agencies will distribute them to those in need.

The center's president, Volkan Ozdemir, says homelessness is a relatively new problem in the southeastern European nation, which has seen more than 1 million refugees over the past four years because of civil war in Syria.


Get the Flash Player to see this video.





Cooking Class :: What smells better than a pogaca coming right out of the oven?

Triangle : 11-08-2014

On 11/8/14, at the cooking class, we learned three delicious dishes.: Kiymali Pilav, Pogaca and Etimek Tatlisi.

Kiymali pilav, is rice with ground beef. It is not difficult to prepare this dish and it turns out to be very delicious, and serving can make it very attractive. Pogaca was the 2nd dish that we learned. Pogaca is a type of very popular Turkish pastry. The filling can be anything, feta cheese, cheddar cheese, ground beef, spinach, olives etc. In Turkey, every bakery would have warm pogacas in the mornings,and while walking on the street, you would not be able to resist to its smell, and will find yourself in the bakery buying poagacas. We practiced making pogaca with the teachers during the class. The third item was a dessert: etimek tatlisi - this is toasted bread dessert, that is prepared in three layers: toasted bread with caramelized syrup at the bottom, home-made pudding in the middle and whipped cream on top. What a delight!

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class with Turkic & Azerbaijani Dishes

Triangle : 10-25-2014

At this class, we moved from Anatolia-Turkey to Central Asia-Azerbaijan to learn new dishes. Our Azerbaijani teacher/chef taught us dishes from her kitchen. We learned how to make plov, ash (rice pilaf) with saffron with special butter and qazmaq crust. We then learned how to make layered beet salad. This is truly an art. Our teacher made us chop the vegetables and eggs that we used for the beet salad. We then prepared fisinjan with chicken breast, walnuts and pomegranate sauce. Learning these Azerbaijani dishes was very exciting. But tasting these dishes were as much exciting. We all loved the beet salad. Fisinjan and saffron plov were very delicious. We just could not resist having more and more.

Art :: Turkish & Islamic Art Presentation

Triangle : 10-18-2014

On the 18th of October, 2014, as a part of introduction to Turkish-Islamic culture, demonstrations of the arts of marbling (Ebru) and calligraphy were performed in the Chapel Hill Public Library between 1:30 and 2:30 pm. In addition, the program included showing of a short documentary on Turkish-Islamic art and culture.

Cooking Class :: Joyful with Traditional Dishes

Triangle : 10-11-2014

At the cooking class on 10/11, we learned three dishes. The Hacegan soup is a vegetable soup from the Ottoman Empire cuisine. This traditional soup is prepared with mushroom, corn, carrots and nuts. The second dish that we learned was dolma and sarma. Dolma is the name used for any stuffed vegetable. It can be eggplant, zucchini, tomato or onion. This time, we prepared the dolma with zucchini and we stuffed it with ground beef and rice.

Media :: An interview with Prof. Allen Page from Meredith College on Hizmet Movement

Triangle : 10-11-2014


An interview with Prof. Allen Page from Meredith College on on Hizmet Movement & Fethullah Gulen.

Voluntary :: Helping Hand to Refugee Families

Triad : 10-11-2014

Turkish-American community of Divan Center recently celebrated Eid Al-Adha (feast of sacrifice). The Eid Al-Adha is an important four-day religious holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide to honor Abraham's obedience to God. Muslims commemorate Abraham's ultimate act of sacrifice every year during Eid Al-Adha by themselves sacrificing an animal such as a sheep, cow, or goat. The Eid Al-Adha is a time of reflection, sacrifice, charity, and family. The meat from the sacrifice of Eid al-Adha is mostly shared with friends, family, and the community at large.

Media :: An interview with Dr. Matthew Lammi from NCSU on Hizmet Movement

Triangle : 10-10-2014

An interview with Dr. Matthew Lammi from NCSU on Hizmet Movement & Fethullah Gulen.


Screening :: Documentary Screening - Love is a Verb

Triangle : 09-29-2014

Divan Center hosted the screening of a new documentary on the Gulen Movement on Monday September 29th at 7pm at Witherspoon Student Center Cinema at North Carolina State University.

Love is a Verb is an examination of a social movement that began in Turkey in the 1960s and now reaches across the globe. The group is called Hizmet, the Turkish word for service or The Gulen Movement after its inspiration, leader and beloved teacher Fethullah Gulen, a man that Time Magazine named as one of the most influential leaders in the world in 2013.

Please visit www.loveisaverbmovie.com for more information about the documentary and to watch the trailer.

Art :: Turkish & Islamic Art Presentation

Triangle : 09-27-2014

On the 27th of September, 2014, as a part of introduction to Turkish-Islamic culture, demonstrations of the arts of marbling (Ebru) and calligraphy were performed in the West Regional Library, Cary between 3:30 and 4:30 pm. In addition, the program included showing of a short documentary on Turkish-Islamic art and culture.

Cooking Class :: Healthy Dishes at the 9/27 Cooking Class

Triangle : 09-27-2014

On 9/27 cooking class, our cooks taught us a healthy, delicious dish as we are nearing the fall and the winter: that was chicken soup prepared with lemon. The Turkish style tavuk corbasi (chicken soup) is prepared shredded chicken, vermicelli, lemon and eggs. Our teacher showed us step by step how to prepare this delicious, healthy soup. We then learned two more dishes: mercimek koftesi and revani tatlisi.

Media :: News&Record: Greensboro photographer chronicles visit to Syrian border

Triad : 09-21-2014

By Todd Drake Special to News & Record

Todd Drake, a Greensboro-based human rights photographer, visited the Syrian refugee community living in Kilis, Turkey, along the Syrian/Turkey border in May. With the help of volunteers and staff from the Turkish nonprofit Kimse Yok Mu (Turkish for "Is Anyone Out There?"), he went to a soup kitchen and shelter for Syrian refugees.
Here, he reports what he saw.

The view from the hilltop was of farmland planted in orderly rows of fig and apricot trees.

Cooking Class :: Dishes from Sultan's Kitchen

Triangle : 09-20-2014

At the cooking class last Saturday, 9/20/14, we learned dishes from the Ottoman Empire cuisine : Eggplant dish Karniyarik (split belly) and kunefe. Kunefe is considered to be one of the most delicious Turkish desserts, and we prepared it with shredded dough (kataifi), cheese and syrup. We also learned how to prepare cacik (cucumber yogurt sauce). Students actively participated while filling in the eggplants.

Speaker Series :: Where is Turkey currently on the path to democratization?

Triangle : 09-13-2014

Dr. Fevzi Bilgin gave a presentation titled "Where is Turkey currently on the path to democratization and why should the United States care?" on the 13th of September, 2014, in Divan Center. In the seminar, topics ranging from Turkey's policy in the Middle East, and in general, its foreign and domestic political attitudes and ways, and the current position of Turkey from the democratic stand point have been covered. The event continued with question-answer session after the presentation. Attending guests have been served with food after the program.

Cooking Class :: First Cooking Class of the Fall Semester

Triangle : 09-06-2014

We enjoyed getting together with you at the first cooking class of the year! We had some familiar faces as well as some new faces at the class.

We learned Turkic/Tatar style Kirma Borek. We prepared two trays of borek. One tray had feta cheese filling, and other tray had ground beef filling. The students actively participated in making of borek which turned out to be great!!! That is why there was none left at the end of class. We also learned puding with shredded dough (kadayiflu muhallebi) dessert and mucver (zucchini patties). After the class, we enjoyed all of these dishes with Turkish tea, and with fresh figs that one of the students brought from her garden!

Announcement :: Divan Center condemns the horrific murder of journalist Sotloff

Triangle : 09-03-2014

Divan Center condemns, in the strongest terms possible, the barbaric murder of American journalist Steven Sotloff and share the pain of his family and loved ones. This terrorist act is a blow to peace, democracy, humanity, and all religious values. Killing of innocent people can not be justified by any reason.

As it is made clear by our honorary President Fethullah Gulen recently, the brutal atrocities committed by the self-proclaimed Islamic State terrorist group deserve strongest condemnation and that these are the people who are hiding behind a false religious rhetoric. As Divan Center, we jointly raise our voice with others to absolutely reject the inhumane killings of innocent men, women and children in the name of religion and demand militants to stop their campaign of violence and terror.

Announcement :: Fethullah Gulen Statement on ISIS

Triangle : 08-22-2014

Alliance for Shared Values - New York, August 22, 2014
I deplore the brutal atrocities being committed by the ISIS terrorist group hiding behind a false religious rhetoric and join the people of conscience from around the world in calling for these perpetrators to immediately cease their cruel and inhuman acts. Any form of attack, suppression or persecution of minorities or innocent civilians is an act that contradicts the principles of the Qur'an and the tradition of our Prophet upon whom be peace and blessings.

ISIS members are either completely ignorant of the spirit of Islam and its blessed messenger, or their actions are designed to serve their individual interests or those of their political masters. Regardless, their actions represent those of a terrorist group and they should be labeled as such and be brought to justice.

The goal of religion is to establish peace based on universal human rights, rule of law and high human values in the world. Any interpretations to the contrary, including the abuse of religion to help fuel conflicts, are either false or deceitful. In true Islamic thought based on its core principles, every mean to a legitimate end should also be legitimate itself. To think or act otherwise is nothing but Machiavellism.

I send my heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of the deceased in Iraq and Syria, and to the family and friends of the slain journalist James Foley. May God give them patience and perseverance, and alleviate their suffering. I pray for the immediate release of other hostages and ask God, the Merciful to lead us all into a world of mutual respect and peace. I invite everybody to join together in this prayer.

Download as PDF

Media :: YesWeekly -- Ending the Fast

Triad : 07-30-2014

Zeynep Tulu demonstrated Turkish water marbling at a recent Stranger to Neighbor event in Greensboro.
Photo by Todd Drake

Questions or comments? Contact Jeff Sykes at jeff@yesweekly.com


ENDING THE FAST

Dinner :: Ramadan Tent

Triangle : 07-26-2014

Divan Center organized the traditional Ramadan iftar dinner tent on July 26-27 in Cary Town Village Square Parking Lot this year. Traditional Turkish dishes including Doner Kebap and Baklava were served to the guests. These iftar events attracted around 250 people from different ethnic and religious groups daily. For the attending kids, we organized face painting, cotton candy, and popcorn stands, and built a playground in the tent area. These activities helped to increase the participation and make this year's event colorful for the attendees, both literally and figuratively.

Speaker Series :: Crime In America: Myths, Realities and Responses

Triangle : 06-21-2014

Dr Rosch enthusiastically shared his understanding of the nature of crime, criminals, punishment, deterrence, and prevention. He showed how crime varies dramatically -- often for reasons we don't understand -- from country to country, city to city, and decade to decade. He told the audience about programs for crime prevention, mostly focusing on young children and their parents, that have been proven to work and that he has presented this year to interested North Carolina legislators.

Art :: Turkish & Islamic Art Presentation

Triangle : 06-08-2014

IITS NC and Divan Center had a documentary showing on Sunday, 8/6/2014. The documentary, produced by PBS, was the "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World."

Speaker Series :: Town Hall Style Meeting

Triad : 05-18-2014

Divan Center organized a town hall style meeting with the city officials at its Triad location on Sunday May 18, 2014. Guilford County Commissioner Mr. Hank Henning, City of High Point Council Members Mr. Jim Davis and Mr. Jason Ewing were the invited panelists for the meeting. They informed the Divan community about the municipal government, taxation policies and news, business partnerships and development plans of the City of High Point.

Cooking Class :: Spring Cooking Class Celebration

Triangle : 05-17-2014

Divan Center cooking class students and volunteer teachers came together at the Spring Cooking Class celebration on 5/17/2014 at the Divan Center.

Our celebration started by welcoming everyone, and then watching a beautiful video with our past class pictures. We then continued with the lunch. Teachers were so proud with the students since the students participated in the potluck with marvelous dishes: lentil balls, mosaic cake, fake chicken breast desert, "hakiki" chicken breast dessert :), simit, saksuka, yummy revani and last but not least pogaca with cheese and olives!!! Many of us went for second and third times as all dishes were very delicious.

We then had live Ebru (Turkish paper marbling art) performance. We were all excited to see this beautiful art. The artist then let couple people try this beautiful soothing art.

Announcement :: Embrace Relief Humanitarian Campaigns

Triangle : 05-14-2014







Cooking Class :: Last class of Spring term

Triangle : 05-10-2014

At the last class of Spring term on 5/10/2014, our chefs prepared a regional dish. The chef who is from Kilis, a town in Southeastern Turkey, prepared Kilis ground beef kebab. There was also bulgur pilaf with vegetables (onions, tomato and pepper). For this class the chefs prepared cake with shredded dough (kadayifli kek).

Cooking Class :: Turkish & Mediterranean cooking class

Triangle : 04-26-2014

Have you ever seen dried vegetables hanging on strings? Have you seen peppers and eggplants dried under the sun like this? In Turkey, it is really popular to get the best vegetables of the season and dry them for use in other seasons.In this class, we learned how to prepare stuffed vegetables from these dried eggplants and peppers.
Our menu was: Stuffed vegetables, authentic Turkish red lentil soup: mercimek corbasi and baked Turkish rice pudding: sutlac

Speaker Series :: Who Are These Peculiar People Called Quakers?

Triad : 04-13-2014

Dr. Max L. Carter spoke about the Quakerism , Quakers' history, and their settlement in North Carolina. Dr. Carter talked about the impact of Friends (as they refers to themselves) on educational institutions in North Carolina and linked the key Quaker "testimonies" such as integrity, peace, equality and simplicity with Quaker work against slavery, for furthering women's rights, and in Palestine. In addition, he mentioned of a Turkish connection with Quakerism in relation to Mary Fisher's (one of the first travelling Quaker ministers) visit to Mehmed IV who was the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire at the time in 1658.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class with a 5-Star Menu

Triangle : 04-12-2014

One of the best representatives of the Turkish & Mediterranean cuisine is the split belly eggplant : Karniyarik. Karniyarik has found itself on the cover of many Turkish cookbooks. At the cooking class on 4/12/2014, we prepared karniyarik and rice pilaf . Cooking class students were very interested and involved in preparation of the dishes. For the dessert, we had kadayifli muhallebi. Although this dessert seems difficult to make, by preparing it together we saw how simple it was. This time there was a chef in our class who participated as a student to learn more about Turkish cuisine.

Cooking Class :: Turkish & Mediterranean Cooking Class - Special

Triangle : 03-29-2014

The theme for the last cooking class on 3/29/2014 was "Turkish style brunch". Did you know that the Turkish style breakfast is so rich with different types of cheese (including feta cheese), green and black olives, tomatoes, jams (including rose jam), tahini-molases mix, pastries, spreads, scrambled eggs, boreks, Turkish pepperonis? During the class, we learned and prepared 3 dishes: scrambles eggs with vegetables (menemen), tomato paste dip (cemen), and pogaca (Turkish savory pastry). When it comes to brunch afterwards, we ate the dishes that prepared as well as all other breakfast dishes.

Speaker Series :: Corruption Scandal and Political Crisis in Turkey

Triangle : 03-22-2014

Divan Center has hosted Emre Celik of Rumi Forum on March 22 at a dinner with our distinguished guests. Mr. Celik has delivered a speech on the corruption scandal and ongoing political crisis in Turkey, which caused the reassignment of thousands of state officials including every rank of police officials, attorneys, and judges.

Announcement :: 6th Annual NC Turkish Olympiad

Triangle : 03-15-2014

Cooking Class :: Turkish & Mediterranean Cooking Class

Triangle : 03-15-2014

We had a wonderful cooking class with very delicious 3 dishes this week. We learned to prepare Dalyan kofte: Turkish meatloaf roll, Muceddere: bulgur pilaf with green lentils, and cikolatali sofra kremi: creamy chocolate pudding. Our teachers showed us how to prepare these delicious dishes, and after the class we tasted and enjoyed the dishes together in the warm environment of Divan Center.

Media :: News&Record -- Nonprofits: Divan Center promotes harmony with diversity

Triangle : 03-05-2014

Posted: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 6:00 am
By Ruth D. Anderson Nonprofits
In 2005, several families in the Turkish-American Community of North Carolina founded Divan Center, which now has locations in Cary, Charlotte and Greensboro.

Divan strives to bring the Turkish-American community together to share their language, culture, religion and food and also to reach out to the wider community to increase understanding among diverse cultures, said Divan's president, Volkan Ozdemir.

Read it at News&Record

Speaker Series :: History and mission of the Servant Leadership School

Triad : 03-02-2014

Dr. Ruth D. Anderson of the Servant Leadership School of Greensboro was in Divan Center-Triad on Sunday March 2, 2014 as part of the Divan Speaker Series. Dr. Anderson talked about history and mission of the Servant Leadership School. In her talk, she explained the servant leadership experiences and practices and, addressed the questions from the audience about the servant leadership.

Cooking Class :: Fun Cooking Class with Fun Dishes on 3/1

Triangle : 03-01-2014

At this cooking class, we learned to prepare three fun dishes: avci boregi, yogurtlu tavuk salatasi and kremali elma soleni. Avci boregi is a delicious pastry that is prepared with bulgur and ground beef. We really enjoyed the yogurtlu tavul salatasi; it is chicken salad served with yogurt and vegetables. Our teacher gave us some secrets during the class to make this salad more appealing and delicious. Our dessert was the kremali elma soleni. It is an apple dessert prepared with tea biscuits, walnuts and creamy vanilla pudding.

Next class menu is dalyan koftesi (meatloaf roll), muceddere pilavi (pilaf with green lentils) and cikollatali sofra kremasi (creamy chocolote pudding) on 3/15. Sign up is simple: RSVP to cookingclass@divancenter.org

Panel :: Turkey Trip Panel

Triad : 02-23-2014

Divan Center-Triad organized an information session for its trips to Turkey which are scheduled in summer 2014. The former trip participants Dr. Raleigh Bailey and his wife Judith Harvey, Dr. Cathryne Schmitz and Prof. John Sopper were the panelists for this event. They shared their unique experiences and observations with the trip and fielded questions from the audience.

Cooking Class :: Eggplant kebab, Rice Pilaf & Mosaic Pyramid Cake

Triangle : 02-15-2014

We learned delicious dishes during the cooking class on 2/15. First, we prepared the eggplant kebab from the Antep/Urfa region. We learned 2 versions of this kebab: one on skewers; and the other version designed in a round tray. Our other teacher cooked a delicious rice pilaf with pine nuts and orzo. It smelled great while cooking; and it tasted marvelous. We then learned another delicious and also very practical dessert : mosaic pyramid cake. It was a surprise for us to see how that biscuit mixture turned into a cake without baking, and without much effort.

Speaker Series :: Media's Role in Intercultural Bridge Building

Triangle : 02-08-2014

Divan Center has hosted Sean Maroney, NBC 17 Anchorman & Reporter on our Speaker Series lecture titled "Media's Role in Intercultural Bridge Building".

Cooking Class :: Spring term cooking classes started!

Triangle : 02-01-2014

On 2/1/2014, we started the spring term cooking classes with a delicious menu. Our teachers introduced three delicious recipes to the students. We learned how to make sosyete mantisi (practical dumplings). Our teacher demonstrated first, and then she let us try. All talented cooking class students were very successful; and made great mantis. Then we learned the simple, but very healthy kisir salad. For the dessert, we had irmik helvasi (semolina halva with ice cream). After the class, we all enjoyed the delicious food and the company and nice atmosphere at the Divan Center.

We are looking forward to the next class on 2/15. Registration is simple- just RSVP to cookingclass@divancenter.org.

Please click here to see the dates and the menus for future class information.

Dinner :: 7th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner

Triad : 02-01-2014

Divan Center-Triad organized the 7th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner. The event took place on February 1st, 2014 in DoubleTree-Greensboro by Hilton. The dialogue dinners hosted by Divan are series of public conversations to draw together diverse communities and discuss critical issues and engage in cooperative social action. The aim is to tie together the vision, values, and cooperative spirit of different communities working together toward a common ground.

Dinner :: 4th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner

Charlotte : 01-25-2014

The Divan Center held the 4th Annual Dialogue and Friendship Dinner in Charlotte with over 100 distinguished guests at Charlotte Plaza Uptown Hotel with the theme of "Finding Common Ground Through Service and Dialogue". The opening remarks were made by Rep. Ruth Samuelson and the keynote speech was delivered by Mr. Dave Wagner of NBC Charlotte. The Divan Center also organized an art contest for high school students in NC with the theme of "The Art of Living Together in a Diverse World" and the third place award was presented to Leslie Hernandez from Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology during the dinner.

Cooking Class :: Cooking Class End Of Fall Semester Term Celebration

Triangle : 12-14-2013

The Turkish cooking classes have been going on since the beginning of this semester, and "each class has been incredible". The students are learning new dishes and enjoying the classes.The teachers are having great time. At this class, "the food was like gourmet luxury delicious". Our gracious teachers taught how to prepare forest kebab, snowball dessert, bulgur pilaf.


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Speaker Series :: Managing Stress and Maintaining Happiness

Triangle : 12-08-2013

As a part of the Divan Speaker Series, Divan Community gathered together in the Center on December 8th, 2013 to enjoy a talk on "Managing Stress and Maintaining Happiness Individually in Marriage and in Family Life" from Dr. Landy Anderton. Since the biggest battles in life are always within us, Dr. Anderton talked about why some individuals are happier than others and how we can keep our individual happiness and light burning so that we can share happiness with our family and friends and help them in their life journey.

Announcement :: Help Typhoon Haiyan victims

Triangle : 11-23-2013

Divan Center's sister organization Hizmet Relief has started assisting the victims of Haiyan Typhoon.

PHILIPPINES - Typhoon Haiyan struck Philippines on Friday, November 8th with a wind of 200 mph, leaving the country in a devastating condition. It has received reports that around 10,000 people have lost their lives and it is the most powerful typhoon that has fallen. More than 120,000 people moved to safety and around more than 850,000 people are in need of food.
As part of Hizmet Relief's mission, we initiated a campaign to help those who are affected by Typhoon Haiyan.

Visit Hizmet Relief to make a Donation

Speaker Series :: Contemporary Art & Artists within the Socio-Political Context of Israel

Triad : 11-17-2013


Ms. Xandra Eden, who is the curator of exhibitions at Weatherspoon Art Museum at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, was in Divan Center-Triad on Sunday November 17, 2013 as part of the Divan Speaker Series. The event started with light refreshments, and was followed by the talk of Ms. Eden. She gave a talk titled "Contemporary Art & Artists within the Socio-Political Context of Israel". In the talk, Ms. Eden shared her observations about the artwork and the artists she encountered on a recent research trip to Israel. She discussed the influence of art on the socio-politics and the influence of politics to the art in her talk.

Cooking Class :: Special Cooking Class for a Special Annual Gathering

Triangle : 11-16-2013

Divan Cooking Class offered a special cooking class for an annual get together for a local non-profit educational organization. The organization members enjoyed their get together by learning authentic Turkish cuisine. The menu for the class were Hasan pasha kofte (meatballs topped with potato puree), peynirli borek (cheese pastry) and revani (semolina cake with syrup). The Divan Cooking Class chefs wanted this special class to be memorable, so we also had additional dishes served for the student guests: mercimek corbasi (lentil soup) and pilav (rice).

Dinner :: 9th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner

Triangle : 11-16-2013

Divan Center organized the 9th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner. The event took place on November 16th, 2013 in Hilton at RTP. These dinners are series of public conversations to draw together diverse communities and discuss critical issues and engage in cooperative social action. The aim is to tie together the vision, values, and cooperative spirit of different communities to work together toward common ground.

Speaker Series :: The Ottoman Empire in World History, 1300-1924

Triangle : 11-09-2013

Prof Cemil Aydin from Department of History at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offered a talk as a part of the Divan Scholars Series. After a breakfast with samples from Ottoman cuisine, more than fifty guests from Triangle region enjoyed an interesting presentation on popular topics such as daily life in Ottoman lands and Ottoman's contribution to the European culture.

Cooking Class :: Lentil balls, toasted bread dessert, and Turkish pastry with ground beef

Triangle : 11-09-2013

The Turkish cooking classes have been going on since the beginning of this semester, and "each class has been incredible". The students are learning new dishes and enjoying the classes.. The teachers are having great time.. What else can we ask for? Some Turkish tea?

At this class, "the food was like gourmet luxury delicious". Our gracious teachers not only taught how to prepare kiymali borek (Turkish pastry with ground beef), etimek tatlisi (toasted bread dessert) and mercimek koftesi (lentil balls), but also served Turkish tea to the class in special Turkish tea classes.

Art :: Art Contest

Triangle : 11-08-2013

Cooking Class :: Hasan Pasha kofte, Mucver & Revani (semolina cake)

Triangle : 11-02-2013

The Chef's 5-Star Menu at the Cooking Class on 11/19

Our cooking class menu this week was just like a very traditional Turkish restaurant menu:

Mucver- zucchini patties- as an appetizer;
Hasan Pasha kofte (meatballs) as the main dish, and
Revani -semolina dessert- as the dessert.

Cooking Class :: Manti and baklava

Triangle : 10-19-2013

A Wonderful Cooking Class on 10/19

Traditional dishes from the Ottoman cuisine to Turkish cuisine, from Turkey to North Carolina are continuing to fulfill our tastes and to warm our hearts at the Divan Center Turkish & Mediterranean cooking classes.

The best manti and baklava chef in town was at the Divan Center Cooking class this week! All students learned how to make the dough, prepare the filling, and cook manti; and then enjoyed eating it with garlic yogurt and sauce. We also had fun making Burma Baklava with our chef and her amazing helpers.

What a meal.. Manti and baklava..

Celebration :: Eid of al-Fitr

Triangle : 10-18-2013

On October 18, 2013 Friday evening, Divan Center celebrated the Kurban Bayrami (Eid al-Adha) with the local community including people from various ethnic groups at Culbreth Middle School in Chapel Hill.

The program started with serving of dinner including traditional samples from Turkish cuisine. After the dinner, the children were entertained with several activities (including moon bounce, cotton candy, face-painting, balloon animals) to feel the bayram (festival/eid) atmosphere while the adult guests were enjoying classical Turkish and sufi music samples presented by Abdullah Demir and Ercan Dereyayla in the auditorium. The event ended with prize drawings for gift cards from local Turkish stores.

Festival :: Ebru Workshop in Cary Academy

Triangle : 10-16-2013

Divan Center Women's Club joined Cary Academy's Ubuntu festival (international festival) on Wednesday,October 16 2013.
Three volunteers presented two workshops to secondary school students. Each workshop started with an interactive presentation about Turkey. After this, students watched a short film about the art of Ebru (water marbling).

Visit :: SECU Family House visit by Divan Youth group

Triangle : 10-12-2013

Our motto at the Divan Center is "Harmony within Diversity." In order for the Divan Center to show our joyous intentions to the community we chose to volunteer at the SECU Family House at UNC hospitals Meal Program. The Meal Program provides a beneficial activity; for the patients and family, the activity provides a break from the hospital or vending machine meals.

Seminar :: Investment climate in Turkey

Triangle : 10-09-2013

Divan Center hosted an information session and dinner about the investment climate in Turkey on October 9th. Participants enjoyed some Turkish food and a presentation about rapidly growing Turkish economy over the last ten years. Working closely with TUSKON and TACTIC, one of Divan Center's goals for 2014 is to host a business trip which would contribute to a closer economic relationship between NC and Turkey as well as mutual investments. Next event is scheduled for December 11th at 6:30 pm.

Cooking Class :: Stuffed peppers, cheese borek (pastry) & sekerpare

Triangle : 10-05-2013

Joy and Warmness with A Delicious Turkish Meal

Traditional dishes from the Ottoman cuisine to Turkish cuisine, from Turkey to North Carolina are continuing to fulfill our tastes and to warm our hearts at the Divan Center Turkish & Mediterranean cooking classes.

At this week's cooking class on 10/5/2013, our chefs Tuba and Filiz taught how to make stuffed peppers, cheese borek (pastry) and sekerpare. All 15 students had active participation, by stuffing the peppers and rolling the dessert dough and placing the hazelnuts on the top. We then enjoyed our meal together.

Speaker Series :: Recognizing Prejudice

Triad : 09-29-2013

Divan Center-Greensboro invited Dr. Clara M. Chu of University of North Carolina-Greensboro, and, CNNC (Center for New North Carolinians) Research Fellow Mr. Toger Vang for its monthly Speaker Series on September 29, 2013. The event started with light refreshments, and was followed by the talk of Dr. Chu and Mr. Vang. They gave a talk titled "Recognizing Prejudice: Seeing the World from the Eyes of an Immigrant and a Refugee". In their talk, Dr. Chu and Mr. Vang addressed several issues including culture and race insensitivity, over generalization and over specification of other cultures, cultural appropriateness of behaviors, and, culture and race dichotomy.

Speaker Series :: Vitamin D: Its role on bone health and beyond.

Triangle : 09-28-2013

Divan Center organized Speaker Series "Vitamin D: Its role on bone health and beyond" on Sep 28, 2013.

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Ali Suha Calikoglu, MD Professor in pediatrics, UNC

Cooking Class :: Friendship, Maklube and Kunefe

Triangle : 09-21-2013

We had a fun cooking class on 9/21. We learned how to make Maklube (rice dish with chicken and vegetables), and Kunefe.

Maklube is a special rice dish layered with chicken and vegetables and it is served with salad and yogurt. Kunefe is a semolina crumble dessert baked with mozerrala cheese and soaked in syrup.

Cooking Class :: Back to Cooking Classes !

Triangle : 09-07-2013

At the first cooking class on 9/7, we learned, prepared, cooked and enjoyed Islim Kebab (eggplant-wrapped meatballs), bulgur pilaf and lettuce salad. Students worked hard!

Next class 9/21 menu: Maklube (rice layered with chicken and vegetables) served with yogurt and salad; kunefe dessert (semolina crumbles baked with mozzarella cheese soaked in syrup).

Celebration :: Ramadan Celebration

Triad : 08-08-2013

Turkish-American community and their guests celebrated Eid of al-Fitr at the Divan Center-Greensboro on Thursday August 08, 2013 . Surprise gifts were given to kids. It was very special day for them.

Dinner :: Ramadan Tent

Triangle : 07-26-2013

The 5th annual Ramadan Tent co-organized by the Divan Center and the Institute of Islamic and Turkish Studies attracted a large crowd for three days between July 26-28, 2013 in the Cary Town Village Shopping Center. Every evening, more than 250 people, from the diverse cultural, and faith communities of the Triangle region gathered around the dinner table to celebrate the fasting of the local Muslim community. State legislatures, local officials, firefighters, and businessmen joined the public in large during the events. Generous samples of Turkish cuisine including Doner (Gyro) Kebab and Baklava were served to the guests.

Dinner :: Community Dinner with Elsewhere Museum

Triad : 07-20-2013

The Divan Center offered a free Community Dinner in partnership with the Elsewhere Museum in Greensboro. Artists-in-residence, Elsewhere fellows, and community members shared a meal together as we observe the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

Trip :: Friendship & Dialogue Trip to Turkey

Triangle : 06-13-2013

Divan Center organized three Friendship & Dialogue Trips to Turkey in the summer of 2013.

Participants had the opportunity to experience the beauty of Turkey through its rich cultural and religious history. They also met with some of Turkey's community leaders and citizens to experience Turkey's unique culture and world famous hospitality. The trip has yielded very positive results with respect to bridging gaps between diverse cultures and faiths.

Dr Jeff Braden, Dean of College of Humanities and Social Sciences at North Carolina State University, shared his experience about the trip in his blog.
http://news.chass.ncsu.edu/?author=19

Dinner :: Annual Legislative Turkish American Reception

Triangle : 05-14-2013

Divan Center and MAFTAA organized the Annual Legislative Turkish-American Reception. The event brought together the local Turkish-American community, with the General Assembly members of North Carolina. There were also distinguished guests from Turkey's Adana province.

Speaker Series :: Radio journalism: a personal experience

Triangle : 05-04-2013

Divan Center organized Speaker Series "Radio journalism: a personal experience" on May 04, 2013.

Keynote Speaker: Frank Stasio, Host at WUNC

Media :: WRAL--Divan Center Water Marbling(EBRU) demonstration

Triangle : 04-28-2013


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Speaker Series :: Robbie Perkins, Mayor of Greensboro

Triad : 04-28-2013

City of Greensboro Mayor Robbie Perkins met with Turkish-American community at Divan on Sunday, April 28, 2013 as part of Divan's Speaker Series. The event started with light refreshments, and was followed by Mayor's talk on important changes happening in the city since he was elected. He also explained his vision how to make the City of Greensboro more economically sustainable and diverse. He emphasized the importance of infrastructure projects and performing arts to attract businesses to the area and be able to compete with other cities.

Announcement :: Boston Marathon

Triangle : 04-16-2013

Speaker Series :: Women's issues in US

Triad : 04-14-2013

Professor Cathryne Schmitz from the University of North Carolina-Greensboro was in Divan Center on Sunday April 14, 2013 as part of the Speaker Series. Prof. Schmitz gave a talk titled "Women's Issues in US with a Historical Perspective." In her talk, she addressed the issues that women struggled with from past to modern days such as violence, gender discrimination at work, income inequality, and political rights.

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triangle : 04-13-2013

Divan Center organized Divan style breakfast on Saturday, April 13th at 10:00 am .

After the breakfast there was a presentation titled "Federal and State Law Enforcement & Government Overview" . Our presenters were ;
Special Agent Thomas J. McGrath, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Special Agent Tiffany S. Cohn, North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

It was a great opportunity to learn about Law Enforcement Agencies at the federal and state level and also how federal and state governments work.

Festival :: International Festival at Green Hope Highshool

Triangle : 03-08-2013

On March 8th, 2013, members of the Divan center represented Turkey at the Green Hope High School's 14th annual International Festival. Baklava, Turkish delight, and Simit samples were given to the Green Hope High School students.

Dinner :: Lahmacun (Turkish Pizza) Day

Triad : 02-28-2013

Divan Center's Woman Club hosted the Lahmacun (Turkish Pizza) Day on February 28. Lahmacuns cooked and served by the Divan Center volunteers.

Festival :: International Festival at Stough Elementary School

Triangle : 02-23-2013

On February 23rd, as members of Divan Center, we participated in the International Festival at Stough Elementary School. We represent Turkey with two tables with water marbling(ebru) and traditional musical instrument (saz) performance. We displayed videos and many photos from Turkey. Saz performance took place in the Multipurpose Room to everybody. It lasted longer because of its impressiveness. Traditional clothes drew lots of attention. Little kids enjoyed wearing fes. Water marbling was one of the most attractive part of the event. Children tried to draw their own marbling.

Speaker Series :: Following Rumi's Footsteps in America

Triad : 02-03-2013

Sophia McGuire Dilkusha is a teacher and representative of the Sufi Order International. She talked about Sufi path as practiced by this U.S. based order, how it is influenced by Rumi's legacy, and it's acceptance and support for all paths that lead to the Divine. She reflected on her own journey to Rumi and answered questions from the audience about Rumi's life and her interpretation of Sufi way.

Announcement :: Divan Center condemns the attack on US Embassy

Triangle : 02-01-2013

A Turkish security guard was killed and several other people wounded in a suicide bombing outside the highly-fortified US embassy in Ankara today, officials said.

Divan Center condemns the attack and strongly rejects any use of force to terrorize innocent people and the killing of innocent people. We have no doubt that those who are responsible for this horrific attack will not escape from questioning and will carry out the necessary justice. We strongly believe that the friendly relationship between the peoples of Turkey and U.S., which dates back to the 18th century, will not be affected by this attack.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims' families and loved ones. Divan Center condemns the violence of this kind against any group of people.

Divan Center

Dinner :: 6th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner

Triad : 01-26-2013

Divan-Triad's 6th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner was held on January 26th, 2013 at Double Tree by Hilton in Greensboro. Every year, this dinner brings over a hundred distinguished members of the Triad community together, including local community leaders, governmental officials, academicians and businessman, to discuss and share their thoughts on the chosen topic of the year. This year's topic was "Education: Cure for Poverty, Ignorance and Disunity" and around 130 guests participated in the event.

Festival :: Multicultural Fair at Pearsontown Elementary

Triangle : 11-29-2012

Members of Divan Center represented Turkey at the Multicultural Fair at Pearsontown Elementary school.

THE HERALD SUN :
Families explore cultural differences at Pearsontown Elementary

Celebration :: Noah's Pudding day

Triad : 11-21-2012

Divan Center organized Noah's Pudding day. Noah's Pudding is prepared by Divan Center volunteers and distributed to neighbors of Divan to celebrate this day.

Voluntary :: Fundraising event to help the victims of hurricane Sandy

Triangle : 11-18-2012

Divan Center of North Carolina joined forces with the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Raleigh (UUFR) to raise funds to help the victims of hurricane Sandy.

There was a food sale after the Sunday services in UUFR on November 18th. The food was prepared by the members of the Turkish-American community in the Triangle area. The proceeds of the sale will be donated to the hurricane victims in New Jersey through Divan Center's parent organization, the Mid-Atlantic Federation of Turkic American Associations (MAFTAA), which collaborates with Helping Hands Relief Organization in this effort.

Dinner :: 8th Annual Dialogue&Friendship Dinner

Triangle : 11-14-2012

Divan's 8th Annual Dialogue & Friendship Dinner was held on November 14th, 2012 at the Hilton RTP. Every fall, this dinner brings over a hundred distinguished members of the community together, including local community leaders, governmental officials, businessman and academics, to discuss and share their thoughts on the chosen topic of the year. This year's topic was "Education: Cure for Poverty, Ignorance and Disunity" and around 200 guests participated in the event.

Festival :: UNC Health Care Multicultural Fair

Triangle : 11-02-2012

Divan Center volunteers represented Turkey at the UNC Health Care Multicultural Fair on 11/2/2012. The Turkey booth was setup as 2 tables: 1 table for the Turkish Paper Marbling Art (Ebru) and other table decorated with Turkish handcrafts. The Ebru art booth drew lots of attention. While the visitors relaxed by watching the soothing nature of the art, they also learnt about the history of this traditional art, dating back to 12th century.

Speaker Series :: The use of Saxophone in Turkey

Triad : 10-28-2012

Peter Salvucci and percussionist Sandy Blocker was guest of Divan Center Speaker Series. Mr. Salvucci made an presentation about the historical journey of saxophone and gives information about the place of saxophone in modern Turkish Music. Thereafter, Peter Salvucci and Sandy Blocker perform a mini concert with saxophone and drum from Turkish Music.

Celebration :: Eid Celebration

Triangle : 10-26-2012

The local Turkish-American community in the Triangle area celebrated the Feast of the Sacrifice in a large and festive gathering in the Culbreth Middle School in Chapel Hill.

Voluntary :: Helping hand to the people in need

Triad : 10-26-2012

The Eid Al-Adha is a time of reflection, sacrifice, charity, and family. The Turkish-American community extended an helping hand to refugee communities during Eid Al-Adha. In partnership with the Center for New North Carolinians, the Divan Center distributed sacrificial meat to 35 refugee families in Greensboro.

Speaker Series :: Running into Silence: A Presentation of Rumi's Poetry

Triad : 09-30-2012

Adrian Vyner- Brooks was our guest speaker of Divan Center-Speaker Series. Adrian Vyner-Brooks is a poet and performance artist who presents the deeply affecting work of the 13th-century poet and mystic Rumi.

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triad : 09-29-2012

Divan Center-Greensboro organized a brunch to have a fond farewell to two community members who are returning back to Turkey. Divan-style refreshments were served at the event and gifts were presented. The special guest of the event was Dr. Terrance Thomas of NC A&T State University who also serves in the Advisory Board of Divan Center.

Condolence :: Divan Center condemns the Benghazi, Libya attack

Triangle : 09-13-2012

Breakfast :: Divan style breakfast

Triad : 09-09-2012

Divan Center - Greensboro organized Divan style breakfast to strengthen bonds among community. Attendees enjoyed having this special breakfast and drinking Turkish tea. Farewell gifts were presented to community members returning back to Turkey.

Celebration :: Eid of al-Fitr at the Divan Center-Charlotte

Charlotte : 08-19-2012

Turkish-American community and their guests celebrated Eid of al-Fitr at the Divan Center-Charlotte on August 19, Sunday.

Celebration :: Eid of al-Fitr at the Divan Center-Greensboro

Triad : 08-19-2012

Turkish-American community and their guests celebrated Eid of al-Fitr at the Divan Center-Greensboro on August 19, Sunday. Surprise gifts were given to kids and the gathering concluded with a reed flute, "Ney," performance.

Dinner :: Ramadan Iftar Dinner

Triangle : 08-17-2012

Divan Center organized a traditional Ramadan fast-breaking dinner at the Cardinal Club in downtown Raleigh. The event brought together more than 80 prominent members of the community. The guest of honor for the night was Ms. Janet Cowell, the State Treasurer of North Carolina.

Dinner :: Ramadan Tent

Triangle : 08-10-2012

Divan Center organized two iftar tents in Cary Town Village Shopping Center to bring local American and Turkish-American communities together. Each event drew more than 300 people, where samples of Turkish cuisine including doner (gyro) kabob and baklava were served to the guests for free. The children also enjoyed the juggling show, cotton candy and face painting treats during the event.

Speaker Series :: Montagnards

Triad : 05-27-2012

Rev. Y'Hin Nie was our guest speaker at the Scholars at Divan on May 27, Sunday at 3 pm. Rev. Nie talked about 'Montagnards' culture and life in exile and their resettlement in NC.

Visit :: A delegation of young student leaders from Burma visited Divan Center

Triangle : 05-09-2012


A delegation of young student leaders from Burma visited Divan Center on a special leadership program. During the event, the students were oriented with Turkey, Turkish-Americans and how Divan members contribute to the multicultural diversity of United States by promoting tolerance and mutual understanding through various dialogue activities. The student guests also had a chance to taste samples from the rich Turkish cuisine and observe the demonstration of Water marbling art, Ebru.

Speaker Series :: Brunch and Guests from Morrisville Town Council

Triangle : 05-05-2012

Members of the Divan Center hosted Mayor of Morrisville, Jackie Holcombe ,Member of Town Council At-Large Mr. Steve Rao and
Margaret Broadwell during a Turkish style saturday brunch.

Celebration :: National Sovereignty and Children's Day

Triangle : 04-29-2012

Turkish families came together in a breakfast to observe the 23rd April National Sovereignty and Children's Day in Turkey. 23rd April was celebrated with dance, poetry and music performance of Turkish-American children living in Raleigh, Cary, Durham, Chapel-Hill and Fayetville.

Dinner :: Dinner with Cag Kebabi (Horizontal Gyro Kebab)

Triangle : 04-29-2012

Turkish-American families gather around the table with their fellow Wake County residents to enjoy a unique taste from Turkish Cuisine. Originating from the Northeastern part of Turkey (Erzurum providence), cag kebabi is one of the ancestors of doner (gyro) kebab.

Speaker Series :: Muslim American, Bahrain and Undocumented immigrant projects

Triad : 04-29-2012

Todd Drake creates art that is shaped by community. His art focuses on creating opportunities for other people to shape what he does and also speak thorough what he does. Mr. Drake spoke about the his projects on the Muslim American, Bahrain, and Undocumented immigrants. He shared inspiring and sometimes sad personal stories of individuals and communities he encountered during his research.

Celebration :: National Sovereignty and Children's Day

Triad : 04-22-2012

2012 Kids' Day was celebrated in Divan Center, on April 22, 2012 at 2:00 pm. Kids presented their own shows and there were surprise gifts for kids. Kids remembered and enjoyed April 23 Kids' Day with these activities. There was Turkish food with barbecue. It was a fun day for everybody.

Festival :: International Day Festival at UNCG

Triad : 04-14-2012

The Divan Center had participated in the International Day Festival organized by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro on April 14, 2012.

Media :: DUKE Jewish Studies--An Interfaith Journey to Turkey

Triangle : 12-13-2011

A Conversation with Eric and Carol Meyers: Ambassadors for Peace - An Interfaith Journey to Turkey


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Media :: WRAL--Divan Center offers Turkish cuisine cooking classes

Triangle : 11-22-2011


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Festival :: International Day at Wake Tech

Triangle : 11-18-2011

Divan Center joined International Day on Nov 18th, 2011 at Wake Technical Community College.

Seminar :: Commemoration of 9/11

Triad : 09-11-2011

Divan Center - Greensboro commemorated the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, to pay tribute to those innocent people who have lost their lives on that day. Members of the Greensboro Police Department, Greensboro Fire Department, and Turkish-American Community attended the event.

Celebration :: Kermes at Divan Center

Triangle : 07-16-2011

Divan Center organized Kermes on July 16th, 2011.

Contest :: 2nd Annual Essay Contest

Triangle : 05-14-2011

Divan Center invited students to participate in the 2nd Annual Essay contest. The contest aims to promote awareness, understanding, and positive interaction among different cultures and communities.

Dinner :: Turkish American Legislative Reception

Triangle : 05-10-2011

Divan Center and Mid Atlantic Federation of Turkic American Association (MAFTAA) held a lively reception on May 10th, 2011, bringing together around thirty-five members of the North Carolina State Legislators and many representatives of Turkish Community living in North Carolina. The event served celebrating continuing friendship and strengthening existing ties between Turkish and American Communities.

Dinner :: 6th Annual Dialogue Dinner

Triangle : 11-09-2010

The 6th Annual Dialogue Dinner hosted distinguished guests representing various religious and cultural establishments and community members interested in dialogue. In addition to the presentations by guest speakers, the round table discussions provided a unique opportunity to share our experiences and learn from each other.

Dinner :: 5th Annual Dialogue Dinner

Triangle : 11-21-2009



Divan Center organized 5th Dialogue Dinner on November 12th 2009 at Sheraton Imperial Hotel in Durham North Carolina.

Contest :: 1st Annual Essay Contest

Triangle : 11-12-2009

Divan Center invited students to participate in the 1st Annual Essay contest. The contest aims to promote awareness, understanding, and positive interaction among different cultures and communities.

Festival :: The 4th NC Turkish Festival attracted thousands

Triangle : 04-18-2009




It was a sunny April day, where so many people were gathering together at NC State Fairgrounds to enjoy North Carolina Turkish Festival, a celebration of Turkish Cuisine and Culture.

Festival guests had a chance to taste a wide variety of Turkish dishes from world famous Doner kebab to a rich menu of traditional Turkish desserts, the oldest form of coffee drinking to Turkish style tea brewed in a unique way.