More jobs, better prospects: opportunities for refugees and the local population

People fleeing from Syria and the local population in the host regions in Turkey lack work opportunities and income. Jobs initiatives combine training and practical work.

Around four million people have found refuge in Turkey since the war in Syria began. The conditions there are difficult. Towns and communities are overstretched, and there are few opportunities to earn a legal income. One of these refugees is Ibrahim Mohamed Almohamed, a 24-year-old man from Syria who has been living in Turkey for three years. He initially took on casual jobs and worked 12 hours a day. He is now completing a training to become a systems operator in a textiles factory and has more time for his family of six.

Almohamed took part in a training course supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in Gaziantep as part of a pilot project in which refugees and the local population can acquire skills for manual trades and put this knowledge into practice directly in small and medium-sized enterprises. This enables people to earn their own income and improves their prospects on the labour market. Syrian participants also attend language courses.

The pilot project is part of a jobs initiative that GIZ is implementing on behalf of the German Government in collaboration with Turkish authorities and local partner organisations. The aim is to improve the financial prospects of refugees and the local population in need of support. The project provides people with short-term employment for which they receive direct wages (‘cash for work’).

Around 25,000 people have taken part in job programmes in Turkey since 2016, more than half of them women. Eight out of ten of those who complete a programme can provide for their families with the income from the projects.

In addition to refugees, the local population also benefits from the programme. Our reference text on ‘Training and employment for refugees and the local population’ provides an insight into the initiative along with background information.

Additional information