Ayfer Elcigil

Ayfer Elcigil

Koc University College of Nursing, Turkey

Title: “ECADEM” A project for the mothers of disabled children in Turkey”


She graduated from Hacettepe University School of Nursing, in 1992. She completed PhD at Ege University School of Nursing in 2004. She became an associate professor in 2013. She worked at Hacettepe University School of Nursing between 1992 and 2000, she worked at Dokuz Eylül Ünviersity, Oncology Nursing Department between 2000 and 2013. She has six months experienced about palliative care in Calvary Hospital in USA. Currently She is working at Koç University School of Nursing. Her main research areas are “pediatric oncology” and “palliative care”. She is an active member of Oncology Nurses Association. She has numerous studies published in national and international peer-reviewed journals about palliative care. She is experienced qualitative research and scales development.


Although certain social and health services are provided to disabled children and their families in Turkey, respite care is not sufficient enough compared to Europea or America instutively. EÇADEM is a support centre providing relief to parents of disabled children –especially to mothers- established by nurses and instructors of Koç University. The Project, EÇADEM, developed by instructors of Pediatric Health Department of Nursing School, Koç University, realized with the support of Istanbul Development Agency. Additionally, The project and the Center are managed in collaboration with Sariyer Municipality and the Bosphorus Association for the Disabled. A director, a physcologist, an activity therapist, an administrative assistant, a support staff and 10 nurses are available in the centre. Caregivers are provided 30-hours (20 hours theoretical, 10-hours practice) disabled-caregiving education by the coordinators of the project. 60 mentally disabled children are lifted to the centre; two days for severely disabled children and two days for mildly disabled children. Each staff is responsible for 3 children. Following the breakfast activity therapist plans various ,activities such as yoga, dance, music, theatre, for children. Consultancy and psychosocial support services for mothers and healthy siblings of disabled children are included in the centre. Besides, mothers are provided education on communication skills and overcoming the stress strategies. As for the healthy siblings of disabled children, some social activities, such as taking them to the cinema or watching a play, are planned to promote their psychosocial development.