Berivan Fars - earning and living with dignity



From Iraq

Berivan, along with her family of five, fled from Qamishlo, Syria due to the ongoing civil conflict and settled in Erbil in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq since April 2013.

By Maxwell George, Advocacy and Communication Officer - Iraq

"When we arrived here, I tried to find a job but couldn't find any because I didn’t have specific skills like stitching or hair-dressing, says Berivan; adding, I also visited several beauty shops but wasn't hired because of my residential status and the language barrier - I speak Bardini Kurdish, which is different from the Sorani Kurdish spoken in Erbil."

In October 2013, DRC selected Berivan for the apprenticeship/job placement program. She was recommended to Digital City - an electronic shop at the Family Mall in Erbil. The shop's management signed her on as a sales person. She earns USD $750 monthly with possibility of earning additional USD $ 100 as commission depending on sales.

"I really want to thank DRC for helping me find this job when I needed it the most. The employer and the staff treat me well. By acquiring the skills of sales person, it has boosted my confidence and I no longer feel a burden to anyone because my earning is helping me to provide my family's basic needs... and yes, I can earn a living with dignity."

With funding from the UNHCR, DRC has provided job placements in 25 private companies for 204 Syrian refugees and vulnerable Kurdish citizens in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. Employers have retained around 97% of the beneficiaries after DRC ended its two-month salary contribution.