Economic Empowerment

Economic Empowerment

With the goal of increasing women’s participation in the economic processes, FSWW provides training, loans, consultancy and sales support.

Business development support: FSWW provides training and monitoring for women in examining their own skills and the local economic opportunities to develop business ideas and plans. Women are supported in establishment of businesses in various sectors including food products (jam, pickles, dried vegetables), soap, gift boxes, ready foods, textiles, second-hand items, child care and education services and restaurants to be run collectively within the women’s cooperatives. Nearly 3.000 women are supported within this program to date.

Maya microfinance support: Maya is Turkey’s first microfinance institution. It was founded by the Foundation for the Support of Women’s Work (FSWW) in June 2002. FSWW, through its Maya Enterprise, provides microloans to women who want to start or develop their micro businesses. The program is currently running in Kocaeli, Sakarya and Eskisehir with the goal of expanding in more cities. As of September 2015, a total of 12,200 loans have been disbursed, totalling to 12 million TL. The first loan amount is 800TL and the loan amounts increase at each repeat loan incrementally. Loan terms are 6 or 12 months and the repayments are made on a weekly basis. Click here for more information.

New product development: FSWW develops new products with demand in the market which women can make with their owned skills. So far it has supported the production of dolls, educational materials for child care centers, other items for children, wooden toys, various accessories (such as purses) made using traditional skills and motifs, textiles for the home (curtains, bedspreads, cushions), aprons, gloves, various gift items, boxes, paper and soap. As part of this work, FSWW holds courses to teach new skills such as soap or gift box making along with training, consultancy and monitoring to turn what they’ve learning into a business.

Savings groups: Savings groups consist of about 10 women who combine small sums to form a fund they can use to meet their needs. The women learn about managing money as well as taking and repaying loans, gaining skills that will help them with business loans. FSWW provides training and monitoring for the forming and management of savings groups. Having worked to develop savings groups since 2000, FSWW has put together a guide, training program and sample records that women can use.

Nahıl: The Nahıl shop sells products made by women all over Turkey. As FSWW’s economic enterprise, the Nahıl shop also operates through other channels. It takes orders (handwork, textiles, packaging etc.) and sells women’s products over the internet. Additionally, the shop sells second-hand clothing and goods. It uses the proceeds to support women’s groups wanting to start early childhood educational services. The regular Nahıl Fair and Nahıl Market offer a wider opportunity to sell. Click here for more information.