The closing ceremony under the DAHIL Project, financed by the European Union (EU), took place at the Point Hotel in Istanbul on Nov. 16 to present Stichting SPARK's local collaborations with and support to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the earthquakes-affected region of Turkey.
Stichting SPARK has signed collaboration protocols with the Chambers of Commerce in quake-stricken Hatay, Adana, Gaziantep, and Şanlıurfa provinces, and has established a connection with the local business ecosystem.
Project’s results include training of 450 SMEs to facilitate their access to finance, and offering business skills training to 250 SMEs through chambers of commerce in the region.
Additionally, SPARK provided sectoral connections by facilitating SME participation in trade fairs and organising business-to-business networking events and helped establishing 40 new businesses.
Collaborating with the Needs Map and the Regional Reconstruction and Development Center established within the chambers of commerce, SPARK provides €375,000 in grant support to SMEs.
The Head of the EU Delegation to Turkey, Ambassador Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, said: “I am glad that people, communities and companies in the regions affected by the February earthquakes can benefit from EU-funded projects like DAHIL, helping to rebuild their livelihoods and businesses. It takes time and solidarity to re-establish economic and social life after a major crisis, especially for SMEs who need access to affordable finances.”
SPARK is the Amsterdam-based international non-governmental organisation operating in 14 regions in the Middle East, North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa. Since its founding in 1994, it has assisted young people by providing education, employment and entrepreneurship opportunities, particularly for women and refugees.