RET began local operations




Program participants
What We Do

Areas of Intervention

Economic growth and development
Economic growth and development
With a focus on female entrepreneurs and fostering cooperatives
Education and capacity building
Education and capacity building
Gender equality and social inclusion
Gender equality and social inclusion
Infrastructure and equipment
Infrastructure and equipment
Peace, stability, and transition
Peace, stability, and transition
Youth programs and social cohesion
Emphasis on gender-based violence (GBV) interventions, case management (including GBV, education reporting initiatives, among others)

Country Summary

Türkiye spans both Europe and Asia and serves as a gateway between the two continents. It shares an extensive border with Syria, and the civil war has spurred an exponential increased in the number of refugees in the country, with the current estimate at:

  • Nearly 3.7 million refugees and asylum-seekers in Türkiye;
  • Including 3.4 million Syrians under temporary protection;
  • And over 300,000 international protection status holders, asylum-seekers of other nationalities and stateless persons.

The devastating earthquakes in February 2023 – which registered a magnitude of 7.7 and 7.6 – hit the Kahramanmaraş province, one of the most densely populated in the country, and were felt intensely in the surrounding 10 provinces which are home to large refugee populations.


Over 50,000 people lost their lives and more than 3 million people remain internally displaced. RET is an active member of the Disaster Platform and has worked in close coordination with the response and recovery actors.


RET has worked in Türkiye for nearly a decade and has an extensive history in the country. It also home to one of RET’s administrative centers that oversees operations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.


There, we have worked with refugees and local communities to improve social cohesion and provide opportunities for economic empowerment, as well as protection initiatives, educational programs, and capacity building for local actors.


Projects and interventions in the country have centered around three pillars:

  • Enhancing the resilience of vulnerable groups
  • Promoting the socio-economic empowerment and self-reliance of women
  • Empowering youth to become agents of positive change


In 2023, we began implementing a three-year program aiming to increase the resilience of vulnerable, underserved refugee communities and host community members in Kayseri, Aksaray, Çorum, and Samsun. The program includes increasing access to protection and improving the psychosocial well-being of target community members, strengthening protection mechanisms through capacity-building trainings and advocacy, and linking local human resources with the labor market.


Also in 2023, we launched a project aimed at fostering resilience among non-Syrian refugees and vulnerable host communities in Kayseri, and Aksaray. By increasing access to the labor market for women from both groups, delivering Turkish language courses to non-Syrian refugees, and promoting gender-based violence, and sexual and reproductive health initiatives, we aimed to create a greater – and lasting – social cohesion and resilience in the region.


As part of our localization strategy, we work with a number of organizations, including LEAP, to build capacity on project implementation, technical quality assurance, financial accountability, and humanitarian standards including protection from sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA).

Through a multiyear project through 2025 and in collaboration with LEAP, we’re providing Turkish and English language courses in Madrin, Şanlıurfa, Ankara, and Samsun to help facilitate communication between the local and refugees communities. Dialogue helps establish trust, encourages value sharing, and ultimately, promotes social integration.


Meanwhile, Leap Natural Brands – a cooperative organization established with RET’s assistance – continues to thrive. The brand promotes crafted natural products, handmade by women in Türkiye, and provides a sustainable source of income generation.

In 2021 and 2022, we focused on deploying additional vocational training to refugee and host communities, including techniques for vegetable and fruit drying based on an innovative and advanced industrial solar drying process that is environmentally friendly and delivers high-quality products. These products were then marketed for sale (retail and wholesale) through the Leap Brand’s social media accounts, email marketing, as well as face-to-face and virtual meetings.

To help us continue this critical work in Türkiye, consider making a recurring donation to RET today. Donate with credit card by PayPal, or gift stocks or cryptocurrency through our profile on The Giving Block.