Announcements / December 21, 2018

2019 IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change Awarded to Cypriot Activist

We are pleased to announce the recipient of the 2019 Global Ties U.S. IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change, Mine Atli of Cyprus.

Mine is a lawyer, and human and women’s rights activist who participated in the 2017 International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) on “Advancing Minority Rights.” She works closely with the Association of Women to Support Living (KAYAD), an NGO in Cyprus that lobbies to advance women’s rights and gender equality in the Turkish Cypriot community.

During her IVLP exchange, she visited three U.S. cities: Albuquerque, NM; Charlotte, NC; and Portland, OR. The project was coordinated by the Mississippi Consortium for International Development and implemented by Global Ties U.S. Community-Based Members from the three cities: Global Ties ABQ (Albuquerque), International House(Charlotte), and WorldOregon  (Portland).

In Albuquerque, Mine learned about local-level initiatives that could help advance gender equality in Cyprus, such as state laws that require employers to provide leave to survivors of domestic violence undergoing court cases. She also visited Charlotte, where she was introduced to self-help divorce kits.

Since returning to Cyprus, Mine has produced identical kits and distributed them to survivors to go to KAYAD for legal assistance. Through KAYAD, the number of women who applied for protection orders over the last three years rose 200%. Mine has led the struggle to initiate murder inquiries into suspicious female deaths and conduct studies with relatives of female suicide cases. She has also trained over 300 professionals, including police officers, teachers, doctors, and journalists, on domestic violence and gender equality issues. She has implemented dozens of research projects, which have led to programs for women’s empowerment, literacy, and addressing gender-based violence.

Her work in the Turkish Cypriot community of Cyprus is particularly important, as the area administered by Turkish Cypriots continues to be considered a zone of impunity for sex trafficking and human exploitation, as cited by the U.S. Department of State’s Human Rights Report.

For her demonstrated impact on the local community, effective application of her IVLP experience to social innovation in Cyprus, and clear potential of becoming a true changemaker in society, we are honored to recognize Mine Atli and her work at the 2019 Global Ties U.S. National Meeting with the IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change.


Each year, the Global Ties U.S. IVLP Alumni Award for Social Innovation and Change recognizes an alumnus or alumna of the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program for high achievements driving social change through innovation in their home communities. Thanks to the contributions of Vicente Lopez-Ibor Mayor, an IVLP alumnus and President of Via-Circulo Jefferson, the award is generously granted annually at the Global Ties U.S. National Meeting.