Opportunities to make a living are severely restricted in a camp setting, but this programme is seeking to open new pathways towards improved livelihoods for refugees.
The programme is about promoting self-reliance, entrepreneurship and income generation.
Among the many small and micro businesses operating in the camps are vegetable-growing, weaving, carpentry, motor-cycle repair, mushroom production, small shops, recycling plastics and cans, watch repair, and selling home-cooked snacks and meals.
To boost additional entrepreneurial activity, this programme provides business development trainings, grants for small-scale enterprises, technical trainings and savings and loans projects.
TBC is working to strengthen camp livelihood working groups and ening the livelihood committees of the Karen Refugee Committee (KRC) and the Karenni National Refugee Committee (KnRC).
In 2016, a total of 1,967 people joined trainings to learn how to manage a small business, of whom 68 percent were women.
That year, 449 new businesses started in nine camps with the programme’s support. A total of 74 percent were started by women. In the same year, more than 2,600 businesses were operating in the camps, 74 percent of which were female-owned.
In the first half of 2017, a total of 879 people, of whom 65 percent were female, participated in entrepreneurship development activities.