The Eastern Ghouta region has been under siege since 2012 which led to sever shortage in food production especially meat, therefore, residents starting exploring other source for protein, and Mushroom was the best alternative as it requires simple supplies for cultivation.
After the success of the Oyster Mushroom cultivation experiment in Eastern Ghouta, Ghiras Al-Nahda decided to transfer the experiment to the largest possible number of the local population, so they conducted Mushroom cultivation training in Eastern Ghouta funded by CanDo platform in 2017. The training consisted of three stages, the first stage was general information on mushroom cultivation methods and practical knowledge, next stage was practical exercise in the scientific studies center mushroom farm. While in the third stage the trainees are provided with seeds baskets so they can start mushroom cultivation in their homes, guided and monitored by Ghiras Al-nahda to minimize any mistakes.
Funded by Humanitarian Fund, Ghiras Al-Nahda provided agricultural inputs and supplies such as seeds and fertilizers, pesticides and equipment to 6 besieged communities in Rif Damascus (Alrhebyeh, Jairud, Qabun, Kudsia, Biet Sawa, Shefonieh). The supported 300 dunums land produced many preservable vegetables which were dried and prepared and distributed as baskets, each basket weighed 10Kg.
Housewives were given the opportunity to work from home through this project where they were provided with knitting materials such as fabric and wool and sewing machines in addition to needed support in order to sell their products in the market. The project was implemented in Qalamoun and Southern Damascus areas, and it provided more than 23 job opportunities.
In 2014, a sewing workshop was conducted by a professional trainer for 10 women who needed a job but they had no qualifications or skills, therefore they were trained in order to make clothes they can sell in the local market using cheap light fabric at first, and better fabric in the second stage.
The project was supported throughout 2016 benefiting 425 families and providing 13 job opportunities.
Ghiras Al-Nahda supported poor families in AlQalamun by providing them with job opportunities in a small dairy products project, using daily cow milk produced by cows in Ghiras Al-Nahda cow farm, and thus, families made a daily income and the whole area received dairy products.
In order to create better markets and job opportunities in areas where Ghiras Al-Nahda operates, we supported several small grocery stores since 2013 with basic goods at affordable prices. The project revenues were used to support vulnerable families and orphans so they start their own small projects. Seven grocery stores were supported in several areas in Rif Damascus and 14 job opportunities were secured.
In 2014, 5 more grocery stores were supported during the siege in Rif Damascus with basic food items, dairy products, and agricultural products which were sold with affordable prices and supported local production.
Due to the harsh living conditions that our families in Rif Damascus went through including deprivation of basic services such as power and water, decayed food and severe thirst, they were forced to purchase ice with high prices from neighboring communities. thus, the ice factory idea came to light in order to preserve food items. Therefore, Ghiras Al-Nahda opened a small factory for providing Ice for residents which helped stabilize the market prices and prevented item monopoly, In addition, it became a source of monthly income for the relief office in times where aid was lacking and secured job opportunities for many unemployed youths.