sada womens coop

SADA’s Women Cooperative

Selected at the 2019 Paris Peace Forum to receive one year of support in 2020

Project led by : 

United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), International Labour Organization (ILO)

Geographical Area
Inclusive Economy

SADA Women’s Cooperative aims to strengthen the resilience of Syrian women and girls and their host communities. Implemented in 2019, the program is an inclusive business initiative engaging refugee and local community women, providing a collective income generation mechanism for crisis-affected women. Based in Gaziantep, a Turkish city only 50 km from the Syrian border, the cooperative provides income generation and fosters social cohesion through its inclusive and democratic business model, hiring refugee and Turkish women.


Launched by 50 refugee and local women, SADA Women’s Cooperative was born in Gaziantep, Turkey in March 2019. The Cooperative is an inclusive and democratic business model powered by refugee and local women. It gives income generation opportunities for its members and offers a safe space for production, marketing and sales of items produced by women. Meaning ‘voice’ both in Turkish and Arabic, SADA is a major hub for social cohesion, collectively governed by women. Originated from the SADA Women’s Empowerment and Solidarity Center funded by the European Union and the Government of Japan, the Cooperative has a diverse portfolio operating in three sectors, the cooperative is active in the production of leather shoes and bags, Syrian and Turkish food, and home textiles. While currently building market links within Turkey, the cooperative aims to reach out to international markets.


UN Women is the UN entity dedicated to gender equality and women’s empowerment, founded in 2010. A global champion for women and girls, it works to make the Sustainable Development Goals a reality for women and girls and stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life. UN Women is operational in Turkey since 2012. It works closely with the Government, civil society and private sector to promote gender equality, empower women and unlock progress by focusing on women’s leadership and political participation, ending violence against women and child, early and forced marriages, gender responsive humanitarian action, national planning and budgeting and UN system coordination. UN Women works to render humanitarian action gender responsive, to strengthen refugee women and girls’ resilience and their access to opportunities, rights and services, as required by international treaties and national legislation.

International Labour Organisation is a specialized agency of the UN for the world of work. It sets international labour standards, promotes rights at work, encourages decent employment opportunities, enhancement of social protection and strengthening of dialogue on work-related issues. ILO was founded in 1919 and became UN’s 1st specialized agency in 1946. It has a unique structure, bringing together governments, employers’ and workers’ representatives with 186 Member States. ILO Office in Turkey was opened in in 1952 for promoting decent work for all, ensuring that core ILO priorities, standards, interests, policies are promoted, and its experience is disseminated. ILO Office for Turkey has developed a programme for Syrian Refugee Crisis, promoting short and medium-term employment, strengthening the labour market and business environment in Turkey since 2014. ILO’s response to the refugee crisis is established on a strong link with key national development strategies, Turkey’s overall response framework and Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan.
sada womens cooperative
sada womens cooperative

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