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Success Story of

Hamoud Al Ibrahim

Hamoud Al Ibrahim is 50 years old, was living in the city of Raqqa in Syria with his family before coming to Turkey. In June 2020, he has become a beneficiary of the “Şirketim” project to realize necessary formalization steps for his restaurant established in Sultangazi, Istanbul.

He has a degree in electricity, but he has been engaging in agriculture and trade in his hometown until the Syrian civil war has begun. As the terrorist organization ISIS has become a dangerous threat in northern Syria, he decided to leave his home with his family and immigrate to Turkey by crossing the border illegally, the way almost all the immigrants did at that time. He first moved to Idlib, a city in Northern Syria close to the Turkish border, then continued his way to the city of Hatay, Turkey. Later he heard that the city was almost wholly destroyed, including his own house. Luckily, he was able to save and keep his family all good and together.

In his first six months in Turkey, Hamoud Al Ibrahim did not work, but this situation has changed as he decided to do his own business. Since he used to engage in the automotive trade in Syria, and he wanted to work in the field of medicinal herbs in Turkey since he has a degree in this field from Ibn Al-Nafis Syrian Canadian Center. However, operating in this field is complicated, and living in a country that he had never been, and having a different language has become crucial challenges for him to overcome. Therefore, he decided to establish a restaurant. After establishing, he had to solve all the governmental issues such as tax plate, chamber registration, work permit, and municipality license. Although he was aware of the necessity of these registrations, he did not have adequate knowledge and economic resource to comply with the rules and regulations. As a matter of fact, because of these missing registrations, he was abstained from investing more in his business and municipality inspections.

Until he heard about the United Work and GIZ from his friends, he had no prior knowledge about the organizations. Then he was introduced in detail about GIZ by one of the field officers of the United Work who paid a visit to his workplace. After that, he thought that the project would be beneficial for him and decided to participate. Besides, the credibility of the project partners was an obvious way to reach out to success.

The most significant outcomes he acquired from the project is that he could be able to operate in the legal framework as he got the tax plate, chamber registration, work permit, and license for his business. Additionally, he also has necessary equipment like a POS machine and fire extinguisher for his workplace with the help of the project. He appreciates the project partners as the project itself has done a lot on his formalization process and helped to improve his workplace, especially in terms of the legal framework.

The pandemic has affected his business unfavorably. He had to close his restaurant for months, but his shop supported with the help of financial support provided by the project. Besides, along with the normalization process, he solves the financial problems that he encountered before and looks at the future with hope. One of his prominent aim in his business is to be able to open more branches in different areas in Istanbul. In this context, he needs more economic support and investment. Besides, he believes that he has a good relationship with his neighbors and customers. If he can get Turkish citizenship, he plans to sell all his possessions and belongings that he has back in Syria and buy a new flat in Istanbul. Now, he lives in the Sultangazi district of Istanbul with his wife and children and wants to stay in Turkey to spend the rest of his life with his family here. He thanks the project for standing by them both financially and socially.