Share economy and Syrian refugees

Sharing Economy:

Sharing economy is not a new concept and with the power of scalability; the results of sharing economy alters the business and the world. Airbnb, couchsurfing, sharedesk, blablacar, UBer, lyft some successful examples that combined sharing economy mentality and scalable digital expertise to create better and affordable services.

Jeremiah Owyang created a nice visualization to show the shared economy in different context like learning, municipal, money and space, transportation and so on. Although the visualization is from 2014; it collected many good examples and recommend you to check[1]. Today, I am going to underline another perspective that is about sharing economy and education of refugee problem in Turkey.

Refugee Education Problem:

According to the recent reports, there are around 1 million Syrian refugee children located in Turkey. 310.000 children are registered in Turkish education system and 600.000 kids are out of school. They are dispersed over big cities of Turkey[2][3].  Syrian refugee children who are registered in the system of Turkish education also have difficulties like [4][5]:

  • Using Latin alphabet and there are limited resource on Arab background educational materials and teachers
  • Have to help family budget and prefer to work in daytime and absenteeism occurs.
  • Lack of role-models and loosing self-esteem
  • Not having a good psychological state
  • Facing with exclusion, racism

Syrian and Arab Diaspora:

There are over 1 million Syrian citizens lives out of Syria. In addition to this, According to International Organization for Migration; 13 millions Arabs are in different countries [6]. If we can combine these numbers with OECD university education percentages [7], together with other factors; there are around 2.1 million Arab individuals that have a degree in university. Some of these intellectual arabs want to help those kids and can be part of open education campaign. They can take some time to coach, educate those refugee kids who are not in the system or having difficulties with alphabet or language itself. Everybody on earth can give money and donation however, these intellectual arabs can give unique things to these refugee kids.

Combine all together for a campaign:

Providing a syllabus, education material in Arabic together with a native role model brothers/sisters can change things for those kids. They can have an open education with a different pattern than day time school.  Because of different time zones, such a platform can turn into a 24 hour open school for preventing a lost generation.

Another problem, there are limited resources of Arabic education materials in the internet. We shared this idea to our Arab expat friends and already found volunteers who can provide education content for free and in Arabic language.

These refugee kids maybe don’t have any device or Internet connection and so they can be hard to reach. We think that sharing economy can find a hybrid solution at this point.

We accept that providing a connection and a device for each refugee is going to be expensive. However, with sharing economy mindset, we can create a self-organized people group to solve education problem rather than waiting for governmental foundation.

Turkey is investing in 4.5G infrastructures and fiber becomes a standard. The rate of internet connection availability is close to EU. 37.5 Million mobile and 10 Million fixed broadband Internet connections are active among Turkey, almost 50% of total population[8].  Turkish neighbors can share internet and device a period of time and act as a facilitator.


We believe that the effects of Syrian refugee kids’ education problem can be minimized with implementing self-organizing sharing economy mindsetremote education digital servicesand relevant syllabus & content.

  • Turkish neighbours can provide connection and device for a time period.
  • Intellectual arabs can coach these kids on positive science with their own mother language.
  • They can feel more connected with all these successful examples that are helping them.

Together with my friend Dr. Fares Alnajar, we are exploring possibilities together with UNICEF, UNHCR and other private organizations to combine these different variables into one in our free time. The problem is bigger than us  and for that reason we are open for any kind of help, comment and feedback about this idea.

Accept this as open idea like an open-source.  If you think that it has some valid points, share this with your network. If you have interest and questions, let me know.

Thank you.