March 27, 2016

Confidence and Trust in Gülen-Inspired Projects

Helen Rose Ebaugh

In every local circle in which I interviewed, members expressed their trust in how their donations were being used. Repeatedly, interviewees said they never worried how their money was being used because they know it is being well spent.

Another frequent comment was, “We see results.” By this they meant that they see students who are performing well academically in the schools and prep courses. They see students from the Gülen-inspired schools who are accepted into top rated universities in Turkey and abroad. Many of them become members of the movement, often when they are in university. It is also common for some people in the local circles to travel to Central Asian and other countries that have Gülen-inspired schools and to see the contributions these schools are making. Supporters also hear stories about patients who are treated in Gülen-inspired hospitals and are very pleased with their humane treatment by the doctors and staff. The narratives of the many needy people being helped by Kimse Yok Mu, the relief association, are repeated in the local circles and reinforced in the media. Since the Gülen-inspired communities maintain a higher degree of communication through sohbet circles and the media, the success stories of Gülen-inspired projects are told and retold, thus assuring contributors that their monies are being well spent and providing tangible results.

Source: Ebaugh, Helen R. 2010. “The Gulen Movement A Sociological Analysis of a Civic Movement Rooted in Moderate Islam.” New York: Springer. Pages 61-62

Published on, 11 December 2015, Friday