Koç Group derives its sense of social responsibility from the philosophy of its founder Vehbi Koç. Many of the enterprises he founded were based on creating economic value and creating “something” out of “nothing” in a newly founded country. Vehbi Koç's sense of social responsibility grew with the development of the nation. Vehbi Koç anticipated needs before they appeared and laid the foundations for businesses and new industries to meet them. With the same foresight, he identified the needs of the new Turkish generations as society developed, came up with ways of meeting those needs and put them into practice.
In light of the “I live and prosper with my country” philosophy, he set aside part of his revenues for social investments. However, Vehbi Koç's concept of social responsibility extended beyond “philanthropy” to giving direction to society; he institutionalized these efforts and became the pioneer of nongovernmental organizations in Turkey. In this framework, he set up his own foundation and led the way in setting up several other foundations. Foundations like TEMA Foundation, Turkish Education Foundation (TEV), The Educational Volunteers Foundation of Turkey (TEGV) and the The Turkish Family Health and Planning Foundation (TAPV) which play important social roles in areas ranging from education to health, family and the environment carry the signature of Vehbi Koç at their bearings.
Vehbi Koç Foundation (VKV), the first large private foundation of the Republic of Turkey, was founded on January 17, 1969, by Vehbi Koç. VKV started its work with an endowment when Vehbi Koç donated 8 percent of the shares of Koç Holding. In time, the regular donations made by Vehbi Koç and other members of the Koç Family increased the net worth of the Foundation substantially. VKV provides a substantial part of its services through non-profit organizations in education, culture and health and these organizations are sustained by special funds set up by the Foundation. Vehbi Koç Foundation ranks among the largest foundations in Europe and in the world based on the size of its assets.
Vehbi Koç Foundation is a reflection of social responsibility. Since its establishment, the Foundation has become a model for many philanthropists and has begun to be extremely active in the spheres of education, health and culture, areas which meet the fundamental needs of life for a modern and developing Turkey.
The Vehbi Koç Award
The Vehbi Koç Award, which is a part of Vehbi Koç's heritage and which was initiated after he passed away, annually gives substantial financial support to distinguished individuals and/or enterprises in education, culture and health.
Vehbi Koç Award Recipients:
2002 – Culture The Topkapı Palace Museum
2003 – Education The Mother-Child Education Foundation (AÇEV)
2004 – Healthcare Bilkent University Faculty of Sciences, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics
2005 – Culture Fazıl Hüsnü Dağlarca
2006 – Education Governor Nuri Okutan
2007 – Healthcare Prof. Dr. Aziz Sancar
2008 – Culture Prof. Dr. Mehmet Özdoğan
2009 – Education Prof. Dr. Türkan Saylan
Vehbi Koç Foundation Scholarships
The Vehbi Koç Foundation,ever since its foundation, supports successful students throughout their education. Two of the educational establishments which are affiliated with the Foundation and each of which aims to be centers of excellence are Koç University and Koç Private Primary School and High School. In addition to these education centers, Vehbi Koç Foundation supports modern education at 17 primary schools built in various regions of Turkey from Bursa to Şırnak, Bolu to Van. Adopting the “Build Transfer Support” model in this effort, VKV brings together and provides training to the administrators of these 17 schools each year within the framework of the project entitled “Hand in Hand for Development”. Koç Group companies in these regions meet the schools' needs.
The Vehbi Koç Foundation: Culture and the Arts
A major part of Koç Group's social responsibility activities in culture and arts are carried out by the Vehbi Koç Foundation. Sadberk Hanım Museum, Vehbi Koç and Ankara Studies Center (VEKAM), and Suna - İnan Kıraç Mediterranean Civilizations Research Institute (AKMED) are affiliated with the Vehbi Koç Foundation.Moreover, Koç University Center for Anatolian Civilizations supports researchers working on the subject.
Support for a Healthy Society
The Vehbi Koç Foundation aims to raise the quality of life of Turkish Society, for a healthy society it runs regular programmes and supports projects. Besides the healthcare institutions it supports since 1969, the Foundation established its own institutions. The Nursing Fund established in 1974 is facilitated to understand the shortcomings of and bring solutions to Nursing proffession. Semahat Arsel Nursing Education and Research Center (SANERC), under the same fund, develop education programs for graduate Nurses and run and support research since 1992.
Koç University School of Nursing, established in 1999, provides 4 year bachelor degree. The Vehbi Koç Foundation American Hospital and its out-patient clinics (VKF MedAmericanPolyclinic, Zekeriyaköy Family Clinic, Göcek Private American Marine Polyclinic) diagnosed over hundreds of thousand patients each year. Additionally, in 2009, Koç University School of Medicine is established.
Vehbi Koç Foundation Web Site
Vehbi Koç Web Site