Farmer Field Schools initiated by the government with the support of the European Union and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) provide a lifeline of employment for Syrian refugees and Turkish citizens.
In the southern province of Hatay, which hosts a large refugee population from war-torn Syria, refugees join locals to learn about farming, with the ultimate purpose of finding jobs or setting up their own business. The project, which has a budget of 10 million euros (TL 90.6 million, $12.3 million), involves training participants on growing olives, strawberries, cotton and vegetables; animal husbandry; and fresh fruit and vegetable packaging. The school, opened in August, is part of a chain of training facilities founded in the cities of Istanbul, southeastern Gaziantep, Kilis and Şanlıurfa, southern Adana and Mersin, northwestern Bursa, western Izmir and central Konya. It aims to bring more employees into the agriculture and food sectors and promote self-sustainability for participants. Participants will undergo training for 16 months.
Ergün Çolakoğlu – the head of the Hatay branch of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, one of the organizers of the project – told Anadolu Agency (AA) on Monday that students undergo training both in theory classes and in the field. “They learn about good agricultural practices. When they have completed training, they will be able to find employment. It will also help to boost manpower for skilled seasonal laborers. We coordinate with the Turkish Employment Agency (IŞKUR) for their employment,” he said.
Naima Khalil, a Syrian refugee who settled in Turkey when she arrived seven years ago with her husband and three children from Syria’s Hama, said she joined the classes with the hope of finding a job. “I was a teacher back in Syria but could not find a job here in Turkey. I decided to enroll in the farmer school,” she said. Khalil said she knew nothing about agriculture before attending the classes, but the school taught her a lot about vegetables, how to grow them, how to protect them against diseases and how to cultivate crops. Khalil aims to find a job in a local vegetable and fruit packaging plant after graduation.
Rena Saleh, who arrived from the Syrian city of Homs six years ago, said her friends recommended the school to her. “I am learning about agriculture and animal husbandry and hope to find a job in the future. I am happy to be able to earn a living for my family,” she said.
Please click to read our informative text prepared pursuant to the Law on the Protection of Personal Data No. 6698 and to get information about the cookies used on our website in accordance with the relevant legislation.
6698 sayılı Kişisel Verilerin Korunması Kanunu uyarınca hazırlanmış aydınlatma metnimizi okumak ve sitemizde ilgili mevzuata uygun olarak kullanılan çerezlerle ilgili bilgi almak için lütfen tıklayınız.