Herodotus Third Age Academy

H3A is a welcoming cooperative that was created in 2010 as the first organization of its kind in Turkey. Its members represent many backgrounds and nationalities and generally have completed their careers but want to stay active, to meet and collaborate with interesting people, to travel locally and regionally and to continue learning in what they think of as a third and vibrant age of life. The organization relies on member volunteers to organize and to run all of its programmes and activities. Lectures and presentations are typically in Turkish or English and translation is often provided.

If you are interested in belonging to an active and welcoming organization in which you can develop and share talents and interests, consider joining H3A. For more information about what we do and how simple and inexpensive it is to join, please click on the activities listed under the What We Do section on the left of the front page, and on HOW TO JOIN. You can learn more about us through attending talks and joining in our Sunday  walks.  These two activities are open to non-members.

Read on to learn more about the Third Age, Herodotus, H3A’s mission and values and how it is run.

The Third Age constitutes the fastest-growing age group in the world.  Physically active and mentally alert, third-agers have moved beyond mainstream working lives while retaining and often increasing their eagerness to learn and to stay engaged in active and stimulating communities.

The first University of the Third Age (U3A) was founded in France during the early 1970s as a space where people would meet purely for the pleasure of learning – no qualifications for enrolment, no certificates awarded at the completion of the courses and no age limits for participation. A self-help approach was adopted: members could be teachers as well as students; classes were held in libraries, private homes and schools; membership fees were minimal; timetables were flexible; and courses ranged from academic subjects to arts and crafts and physical activities. U3As provide social opportunity to bring together like-minded people and the movement has spread throughout the western world.

Bodrum’s H3A:  the pioneer Third-Age movement in Turkey.

In March 2010 the Herodotus Third Age Academy was legally constituted as an association operating under the relevant law.  Unable to use the word university because of local restrictions, the founder named the organization the Herodotus Third Age Academy, H3A for short.
The aim of H3A is to create and strengthen social and cultural ties, as well as solidarity between our members. Our association is based entirely on voluntary work, which is carried out at all levels of management and membership, encouraging among other things the self-learning concept.

Why Herodotus?
The name honours the “father of history”, born in Halicarnassus (modern-day Bodrum) 2,500 years ago, who travelled widely and wrote his book The Histories  based on his experiences and discoveries.

Objectives and values

The Herodotus Third Age academy (H3A) is a welcoming cooperative for sharing skills and interests and strengthening social and cultural ties.

It was founded in 2010 and modelled on the University of the Third Age which by then had become a world-wide phenomenon.  It is a non-profit organisation with a social basis enabling people who have retired from full-time work to fill their time with worthwhile activity linked to learning.

H3A is a place where members meet purely for the pleasure of discovery with no qualifications required for enrolment, no certificates awarded, no limits on age and where membership fees are kept to a minimum.

 H3A members:

  • Work as a cooperative for sharing skills and interests and strengthening social and cultural ties
  • Contribute to the organisation and administration of the activities
  • Support people in the local community where possible
  • Respect all nations, creeds and all religious beliefs and maintain political impartiality.

H3A’s main board meets each month. Any H3A member is welcome to observe.

Who’s Who in H3A and Who Does What

Board of Directors
Camille Şahin, President of the Association and Chairman of the Board

Ayşe İdil, Vice President

Adil Korkmaz, Association Treasurer

Aziz Başan

Christine Davies

Gülçin Kadıkoy

Linda Bennett

Robert (Bob) Patrick

Samer Atasi

Board of Auditors
Tuncay Yurtsever, Chairman of the Board of Auditors
Betigül Artış
Atam Seçkin

and deputy directors who advise the main board on projects delegated to it: Asuman Alkan, Ayla Oflaz,  Edit Sümer,  Mehmet Çuhadar, Nevhiz Aksunkur, Osman Dörtok and Reyhan Destan.

H3A Activities

Presentations are held on alternate Fridays from autumn through to spring. Open to non-members. Contact: Ayla Oflaz [email protected]

Walks take place every Sunday, alternating between hikes and strolls. Open to non members. Contact Ayşe İdil [email protected] or Robert Patrick [email protected]

Tours and day trips are organised on an adhoc basis during spring and autumn. Contact Mehmet Çuhadar [email protected]

Social events. Breakfasts are organised once a month throughout the year, in addition to lunches, a festive dinner held in December and adhoc events held throughout the year such as recitals and wine tastings…  Contact Linda Bennett [email protected]

Interest groups to further the main aim of H3A to be a shared learning organisation for third-agers meet from September to May and are coordinated by Christine Davies [email protected] and Nevhiz Aksunkur [email protected]

  • Art and drawing led by Gülçin Kadiköy [email protected] every Tuesday and Friday at Gürece
  • Handicrafts led by Esin Atabeyli [email protected] alternate Monday mornings at Gürece
  • Language conversation groups:
    • French conversation led by Amelie Edgu on Monday afternoons twice a month at her home.  Contact [email protected]
    • Turkish conversation led by Vivian Kohen [email protected] Wednesday mornings weekly at Gürece
  • Photography workshops and walks led by Terry Glaysher [email protected] on alternate Wednesday afternoons
  • Reading groups in
  • Rocks and minerals led by Ursula Pfaffenberger [email protected] on Wednesday mornings in English and in Turkish at Gürece
  • Singalong led by Martha Patrick [email protected] and Nurcan Arik [email protected]  alternate Thursday afternoons at Gürece
  • Writing circle led by Martha Patrick [email protected] alternate Monday afternoons at Gürece.


Banking and cash management – Linda Bennett [email protected]

Events list – Martha Patrick [email protected]

Google group – Jak Kohen [email protected]

Gürece manager – Linda Bennett [email protected] 

Gürece village women’s project organised by Vivian Kohen and her team.  Contact Vivian Kohen [email protected]

Membership – Şadan Korkmaz [email protected]

Support groups organised by Camille Şahin

Website – copy editor Christine Davies [email protected];  photographs editor Jak Kohen [email protected]