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Ceren Baştürk

Ceren BaştürkCeren Baştürk, 24, a graduate student living in Beyoğlu , Istanbul , has gotten to be known as 'the girl with a yellow bag' by the business owners and residents of Kasımpaşa, Şişhane and Eminönü neighborhoods.

Having graduated from the university, Baştürk has been walking around the streets of those areas for the past four months, collecting plastic and aluminum rubbish.

Baştürk takes credit from vending machines that pay people for depositing plastic bags and bottles as well as aluminum cans in exchange for credit to their Istanbulkart or from machines that trade dog or cat food for plastic or aluminum can deposits. She leaves the food for the cats and dogs living on the street.

Ceren collects waste in the streets of Istanbul and has also created greater awareness in her environment. "I like animals very much," Baştürk said:

"In line with my budget, I will buy food or milk for them and will definitely leave it to the animals around me.

There is a food machine, automatic vending style which was created by the municipality. All I have to do is throw the plastic and aluminum waste there and leave the food to the cats and dogs.

Ceren BaştürkMy neighbors and my friends all collect waste. I asked them to collect from the shopkeepers close to their house. Some refused, but I got such good reactions from some that they accumulate more and more every day.

Ceren is curiously waiting for the street animals every day - "Because I leave milk or food every day, the cats there know me from a distance. They see me from a distance and come to me.

So far, my family, my friends and my teachers have all left me feathers for my angel wings. I combined those feathers and turned them into my angel wings and this angel wing has now grown stronger.

I want to leave a feather by touching the animals, the elderly, the children and every person I can help with this angel wing."

When asked why she always uses yellow trash bags Ceren Baştürk said, "I was careful to carry the waste in a better bag. The yellow color draws attention. "I like yellow, it's like a daisy."

Let's say it brings to mind a flower. I try to raise awareness of this business by being more colorful, more fun and not embarrassed or bored. Because it is transparent, people wonder. When they see I am collecting the rubbish in it, they bring all their plastic and aluminum waste to me. "

Ceren BaştürkAnimal lover Ceren Baştürk also feels she has a calling. She feels that the number of these vending machines should increase - vending style machines should be placed in many places.

"In this way, we can support animals while cleaning up the environment. This machine both recycles and feeds animals - it's beautiful."

"These machines can be placed in many places. The people I communicate with agree but who do you think will get them...?"

I'm the only one. I can carry a maximum of 10, 20, 100 bags. I can only carry a neighborhood. If many people accumulate the cans and bottles and the municipality leaves the machines somewhere, there will be more awareness and far more accumulation.

Turgay Aslan, one of those shopkeepers that collects for Ceren, said, "We collect waste every night with bags. They come to us every evening. We also give her the bottles we have collected."

Ms. Ceren did not have such consciousness before doing this. I had seen her in other shops, so I said stop by and let us save the cans and bottles for you. So now we have been delivering the waste to her for the last 4 months.

Ceren BaştürkCeren Baştürk feels there is a way to expand on her project. She not only wants to fill the 'girl with yellow bag' bags for animals in need, but also include people who through circumstances find themselves in need as well.

Baştürk is now looking for the support of philanthropists to give a hand to homeless people and other people in need.

Saying that she aims to bring hope not only to street animals but also to people who need help and the homeless with support from charitable citizens.

Baştürk started collecting bottles for stray animals thanks to environmental awareness she learned when she was living in her hometown of Kütahya and decided to make use of it when she moved to Istanbul.

It was there where her sensitivity attracted the attention of shop owners and tradesmen over time, enabled her to show them how to gain the habit of collecting plastice bottles and aluminum cans so they could be turned into food for street animals.

Every morning, Baştürk, with a yellow bag she wore on her arm, collected cans and bottles around Galata and Şişhane and started to throw them into the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality's (IMM) Smart Recycling Container.

In this way, Baştürk, who sometimes purchases food and milk for animals from the markets where the Istanbulkart card is valid using the balance loaded on the "Istanbulkart", also delights children by buying foods such as candy and chocolate.

Ceren BaştürkShopowners and other businesses liked assisting because it was always going to the garbage. "It is so nice to collect them now, to get the return in this way.

We collect the caps of the bottles separately. Customers have become sensitive to this too and will ask: 'Is this still being collected?'

The impact of her efforts went even further: "My daughter started to take you as an example. She puts a box on the balcony.

She can collect it with you? She is very curious about you." she said as she was texting "I want to raise awareness".

Expressing that she wants the "yellow bag girl" to take on a different and larger dimension, Baştürk continued:

"For example, a bakery should say to me," 'Ceren, today we made 100 extra loaves of bread for your yellow bag.' I want to carry not only pet bottles and cans, but also nice things like hope, love, happiness, peace in my yellow bag."

"The result is not material but more spiritual. I want to raise awareness. Yes, I want to, but I am a student and I can only work with minimum wages. We can do this if we can a little assistance from everyone."

Ceren Baştürk"For example, my followers say, 'Let's go street by day, collect from the shopkeepers, then shop and buy soup ingredients and cook it in a small pot and distribute it to 3-5 cold people who need it.' "

Baştürk, who lost her mother when she was 8 years old, emphasized that she expects support from people in every sense. "It is good to be united. Because I can't really do anything on my own.

I would distribute 100 bread somewhere here, but it would be nice if others distribute it in another city. When it blooms, it turns into a beautiful plan."

"Ceren is a very thoughtful, sensitive girl." 54-year-old Hayim Emyani, who has been in trades in Karaköy for 45 years, said that Baştürk collected cans and bottles from them 4-5 years ago.

Saying that plastic and aluminum bottle accumulation habits were formed with Baştürk, Emyani said, "Ceren is a very thoughtful and sensitive girl."

"She is also very helpful to street animals. She takes food to animals. We love Ceren as artisans. We all try to help. We always stop. We give her the bottles and cans we have collected. We are always ready to help Ceren."

Ceren Baştürk


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