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 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 June 2018, WDI traveled to Istanbul to serve as a judge in the end-of-cohort business pitch competition and provide the field team support in implementing a toolkit for launching an entrepreneur mentorship program. In November 2018, WDI traveled to Istanbul to conduct a training of trainers workshop focused on pedagogy and building the capacity of local trainers to deliver the entrepreneurship curriculum.

Building on WDI’s efforts to lead the development of an entrepreneurship curriculum composed of 25 modules in the previous year, WDI worked on expanding and refining select modules based on feedback from the field. Part of this included drafting a workbook that provides entrepreneurs with practical exercises to complete as they advance through the program. In June 2019, two WDI staff members along with a WDI faculty affiliate will travel to Turkey to workshop revised curriculum modules with local trainers, as well as assess needs of advanced entrepreneurs to inform design of an accelerator program, a core activity for the next phase of the project.

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