Muhammed Bilal was born in Aleppo in 1992, and he studied until the end of secondary school. Now, he lives in Istanbul with his wife and three children, and he runs an upholstery workshop in Esenyurt, Istanbul.
Until he obliged to leave Syria because of the civil war, he used to live in Al-Qatifa, Damascus. In 2015, he left Syria and immigrated to Turkey. He entered Turkey through the Qamishli border, and during his transit, he was alone.
Today, he lives in Esenyurt with a big family. The family involves a wife, three children in ages of 1,5, 3, and 5, 57 years old father, 49 years old mother, a widow sister, and her son; they all are living in the same flat.
Starting a new life in Turkey was not an easy task for him. Before he started his own shop, he worked for various companies as a worker. Although work was good and he was happy, he preferred to start a shop. He thought that it would be more comfortable and profitable. Besides, he used to work for an upholstery workshop in Syria, and he had the necessary skills and knowledge in this field of profession. Thereby, he established the business in February 2019. Until then to the project date, he worked informally; actually, he even did not have any idea over the obligatory business registrations.
Before one of the project officers visited his workshop, he did not know about United Work or GIZ. After the field officer’s visit, he learned the project, obligatory registrations, and United Work and GIZ. Then, he asked his friends and sister’s opinion. Following their advice, he decided to participate in the project immediately. In the end, he joined the project at the beginning of March, and from that day to today, his taxpayer registration, chamber of handicraft registration, work permit, and municipality license registration completed, as well as acquiring POS machine and fire extinguishers, with the support of the “Şirketim Project”; in other words, with the support of United Work and GIZ.
He depicts the project as a medicine that provides benefits in all aspects. During the project process, while he has learned legal terms in Turkish law, he completed all the necessary steps and inventories. All processes appropriately operated, and he did not face any problems either in the responsible government offices or with the work of project staff. Now, he is working without fear of the municipality since he knows that he is working fully legal, and he believes it would contribute to his business in terms of revenue, advancement, and improvement.
In the future, he wants to stay in Turkey because he feels being welcomed here, and he does not face any legal or personal disputes, although it was a bit difficult at the very beginning. Regarding his business, he would like to develop it, to manufacture better, and to have a better life. To expand his business, he requires more financial resources and improving his Turkish language skills. Besides, he would like to share his thanks with United Work and GIZ, especially for the financial support that is provided to remedy the adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It had been a vital resource for ceasing the damage of the pandemic.