Income from private giving has always been a great importance to our community at SPI.
During 2016, voluntary private support had contributed to 20% of our activities. Syrian families face particularly difficult circumstances living in Turkey, the lack of government funding and their restricted rights to work place additional pressure on them.
SPI, as a grassroots organization in direct connection with the families, is in a unique position to provide services that governments are failing to give. The knowledge that SPI obtains about its community’s needs enables it to effectively provide services and allocate resources; in this case SPI serves as the link between individual donors and the Syrian community.
This forms an important personal connection between those willing to give and those with specific financial needs. The SPI community is made up of locally placed families and young individuals each with their own specific changing financial needs. Individual donors have the opportunity to support specific families giving them short term financial aid and the ability to decide how their contribution is spent. Largely the finances go towards supporting their children’s education, rent, utilities and medical costs. Individual donations give SPI the margin and therefore freedom necessary to respond to the changing needs of the families it serves.
The difficult circumstances that Syrian families face living in Turkey and the lack of government financial aid for refugees make it necessary sometimes to sponsor an in-need family to give their kids a chance for education or to cover medical costs. However, maintaining and expanding our capacity requires a stable income source from foundations and other grantees. Also, hiring professional staff to run a project needs stable funding to allow retention. Meanwhile, small contributions are crucial as they are used to push forward and to overcome obstacles facing families.
Whilst major organization donations provide SPI the stability of operating in a physical space, covering rent, utilities, consistent staff and legal requirements. This is the fundamental need for a community center, to secure larger quantities of stable, consistent funding streams in order to develop the projects within the space. Both these private and institution-granted funding streams are necessary to serve the community and aid in their transition towards independence.
Without being open to both income streams this community wouldn’t be able to do the important work of both providing a community space and also enabling families to be empowered in their own financial choices.
SPI aims to provide for the local area in which the center is placed, however there are many Syrian families in the wider area that are in need of support and cannot easily reach the center. With an increased income, SPI would be able to financially support many more families in the Fatih district of Istanbul, beyond the local streets we operate in now.
SPI assesses the needs of the Syrian families in different ways, this is an important aspect of distributing funds in a fair, timely and secure way. Our direct connection with 300 families allows transparency, a unique position of SPI, and one that attracts the support of many people worldwide.
Thank you to our project partners MONDO, World Bank Group, and Worldwide Partnership Program to name a few.
And a special thank you to all of you who provide vital aid in SPI’s work through private donations and awareness-raising. Your continued support allows us to lift up a community most deserving of a brighter future.
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