📩 19/09/2023 13:40
European Mobility Week, which is celebrated in many parts of the world between 16 and 22 September this year, as every year, witnessed colorful scenes in Mersin as well. As part of the week celebrations, the 'Fancy Women Bicycle Tour' event was held simultaneously in various provinces of Turkey. Metropolitan Municipality Women and Family Services Department staff also supported the event. At the event, which also included producer stands, women increased solidarity by offering their handmade products for sale.
In this context, women who decorated their bicycles and filled the area with their colorful clothes in Özgecan Aslan Barış Square came together to give the message that there are cyclists in traffic. At the event, which was organized to encourage women to cycle and to encourage citizens to travel with alternative transportation methods instead of individual vehicles, decorated women rode their bicycles to raise social awareness. In the cycling tour, which started from Özgecan Aslan Barış Square, the women cycled through Mersin İdman Yurdu Square, Muğdat Mosque, Güven Sitesi, Forum AVM, Yenişehir Fire Department, and ended their tour by returning to Özgecan Aslan Barış Square.
Sahil: “If women take to the streets, the world will change”
Edibe Sahil, who works as Women's Branch Manager at Mersin Metropolitan Municipality Women's Family Services Department, said, “Today, we are organizing an event here that will emphasize women's participation in social life, using bicycles and environmental awareness. Fancy Women Bicycle Tour has been organized for more than 10 years and our municipality supports it every year. We open producer women's stands here and support the organization. "We are carrying out an awareness campaign by cycling on the same route with women," he said.
Stressing that the event is an important event with the main theme of women and the environment, Sahil said, “We are organizing this event to emphasize women's going out on the streets, riding bicycles, moving away from cars and turning to bicycles, and environmental awareness. Because if women take to the streets, the world will change. "We know this and that's why we are here today," he said.
This is: “The world's single most colorful and powerful global women's movement”
Emphasizing that the event is the most colorful and strongest global women's movement in the world, Mersin Organizer of the Fancy Women Bicycle Tour, Ebru Petek Budur said, “This movement has been held since 2013 within the scope of European Mobility Week to draw attention to sustainable and active transportation issues. On Car-Free Cities Day, it allows women to be visible in society as they wish, as well as to be more visible with bicycles and to gain respect for the society's bicycle transportation. "In addition, it contains very important purposes ranging from economy to health and social benefit, such as the spread of carbon emissions into the atmosphere in order to draw attention to the climate crisis."
“The event leaves a valuable signature on the city's cultural and social heritage.”
Emphasizing that Mersin is the 6th city to start organizing the Fancy Women Bicycle Tour and that it has been held every year since 2015, Budur said, “We are organizing the Fancy Women Bicycle Tour with the support of Mersin Metropolitan Municipality. This leaves a very valuable signature on both the cultural and social heritage and future of the city. Over the years, there has been a huge increase in the number of women who have adopted the habit of using bicycles in their daily lives. "The visibility of women on bicycles on the street also serves as a very important role model for other men, women and children to use bicycles," he said.
“The Metropolitan Municipality's support continues to increase every year”
Stating that the Metropolitan Municipality's support for the event continues to increase every year, Budur said, “This year, the Metropolitan Municipality gave us announcement support on posters, billboards, LED screens at bus stops and inside the buses, and on social media. In addition, with its City Orchestra, sound, stage and music system, it was mobilized to ensure that the people of Mersin who attended this event had a more enjoyable and comfortable few hours. I would like to thank Metropolitan Mayor Vahap Seçer. Because he attaches great importance to people-oriented work since the day he took office. We can also say that Mersin has come of age since 2021 due to its sensitivity to bicycle transportation. "I thank you very much for that," he said.
The event contains many messages from women to environmental awareness.
Noting that they gave many messages to people with the event, from women to environmental awareness, Handan Dündar said, “The first message we want to give to people is; women's freedom. Being able to achieve things on their own and standing on their own feet. But a second awareness that is equally important to us is to save the world from car exhaust and the damage it causes to the environment and ride a bicycle. "Doing sports and acting with the environment in mind," he said.
Handan Dündar also stated that the event started in Izmir years ago and spread to Turkey. Dündar said, “From all the big cities to small towns, all women have started to show themselves. Awareness of this issue has increased. "This is a very good thing. Now people, women, men, everyone uses bicycles even when going to work," he said.
Stating that he has been working in Mersin since 2000 and is now retired, Dündar said, “I have never seen another mayor who values and cares so much about women, children, the environment, young people and social life. I have seen 3 or 4 mayors so far. I would like to thank Vahap President for all his efforts and the support he gave us. "I'm glad it exists, let it always be," he said.
“We are celebrating such a day to raise awareness for female cyclists”
Pınar Kayacan, one of the women participating in the event, stated that the event is celebrated every year in more than 200 countries and said, “We are celebrating such a day to show awareness of female cyclists and bicycles. All women can ride bicycles in their most decorated and beautiful form. They can also go to work like this. We don't just look at it as sports. As the beautiful women of Mersin, we all gathered together. We, nearly 250-300 women, are in this group. We celebrate this every year. "We continue cycling to emphasize awareness," he said.
Bade Albayram is also one of the young people who participated in the event. Albayram, who came to the event with his mother and said that it was fun for him, said, “I love cycling. That's why I love participating in such events,” he said.
“The Metropolitan Municipality carries out very nice events”
Professional cyclist Esen Çay said, "We are trying to be present in traffic to show that cyclists are also present in traffic, and especially to show that women can dress up like this and go to work."
Adding that the Metropolitan Municipality carries out important and beautiful events in Mersin, Çay said, “I am sure that these types of social events take place in many parts of Turkey, but I think that very nice events have been carried out for us, those living in Mersin. I would like to thank our President Vahap Seçer for the value he gives to women. "I'm sure many women want to be in our shoes," she said.
Saying 'Cycling is a very nice thing', Neriman Yıldız stated that she participates in the event every year and added: 'It is a nice thing as a sport. "You feel much freer and happier," he said.
“Riding a bike is a woman's freedom”
Nihal Yürü said that when you think of a bicycle, you think of freedom and said, “For me, riding a bicycle is a woman's freedom. Cycling; Being able to move freely and go out. Our message; To explain that women should be free and not be under certain restrictions. "Cycling is not a sport for us anymore, it is a way of life," he said.