Programs & Projects

Livelihoods Innovation through Food Entrepreneurship (LIFE) (Turkey)

September 1, 2017 - August 31, 2019


WDI is collaborating with a consortium led by the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) on the Livelihoods Innovation through Food Entrepreneurship (LIFE) project, funded by the U.S. State Department. In addition to CIPE and WDI, consortium members include IDEMA, Union Kitchen and The Stimson Center. This project aims to develop sustainable livelihoods in the food sector for Syrian refugees, other refugees, and their host communities by providing entrepreneurs access to training, business support services and mentorship at Food Enterprise Centers (based in Istanbul and Mersin, Turkey) designed by the LIFE project.

In July 2019, a WDI team of two staff members and a consultant traveled to Istanbul to run “train-the-trainer” workshops on several modules, including leadership, customer service and social media marketing. The WDI team also met with some of the graduates of the program and conducted interviews to assess what elements of the curriculum have been most impactful and what new course material would enhance the program. The WDI team also paid visits to the businesses of several program graduates to offer one-on-one business consulting. During the trip, the team attended a pitch competition at one of the two program site locations, Mersin, with the WDI consultant serving on the panel of judges and a WDI staff member kicking off the competition with an opening speech. WDI is currently finalizing a project workbook that will be used by all program participants as they proceed through the four-month training program.

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