TURKEY / REFUGEE BOOKSELLER

23-Mar-2018 00:02:45
When Syrian refugee Nada came to Istanbul four years ago, she found she missed reading more than anything. She decided to create the lending library initially just for friends, sourcing the first 200 books through donations from Saudi Arabia. UNHCR
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STORY: TURKEY / REFUGEE BOOKSELLER
TRT: 02:45
SOURCE: UNHCR
RESTRICTION: PLEASE CREDIT UNHCR ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: ARABIC / ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 13 FEBRUARY 2018, ISTANBUL, TURKEY
SHOTLIST
1. Med shot, Mohammad bringing a suitcase inside the bookstore.
2. Wide shot, Mohammad bringing a suitcase inside the bookstore with Nada inside.
3. Med shot, Mohamad and Nada arranging the books.
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“I started, I make like a rent system for my friends to give them books to read. And they liked the idea very much and they said maybe we can make it bigger. “
5. Med shot, Mohamad and Nada arranging the books
6. Various shots, Mohamad and Nada removing books from box
7. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Mohammad, Syrian Refugee:
“Syrian people are well-educated people. In Syria we used to have to many book stores.”
8. Various shots, Mohamad and Nada removing books from box
“So by doing this we are trying to inspire the whole community.”
9. Close up, Nada
10. Close up, Mohammad
11. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Mohammad, Syrian Refugee:
“I feel safe in Turkey. Turkey was the only refuge for me when my life was in danger.”
12. Med shot, Mohamad taking books from box
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We can say that this country open doors for us.”
14. Close up, book in the hands of Nada
15. SOUNDBITE (English) Mohammed, Syrian Refugee:
“I loved the owner.”
16. Med shot, Nada organizing the shelf
17. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“I told him always that I make the base and he makes the building.”
18. Med shot, Nada reading while Mohammad working on the laptop.
19. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We made the extension of the company. We made our name. We bought some books so we made our library bigger and we published our new product.”
20. Close up, calendar taken from the box.
21. Close up, calendar on the shelf
22. Close up, Nada organizing the shelf
23. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We were so happy because we have many dreams. We want to improve our work and push it forward.”
24. Wide shot, Nada and Mohammad closing and leaving the bookstore
STORYLINE
Nada, 25, a university graduate from the Syrian town of Homs, decided to create the lending library initially just for friends, sourcing he first 200 books through donations from Saudi Arabia.

SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“I started to make a rent system for my friends to give them books to read. And they liked the idea very much and they said maybe we can make it bigger.”

And so Boukah was born.

An Arabic library and bookstore in Istanbul.

Nada and Mohammad are Syrian refugees.

Slowly she expanded the collection and began lending online to other Syrian refugees. Now, for a small annual fee, refugee families on low incomes can read different books each week throughout the year.

She met her business partner and fiancé, Mohammad, 27, at a book fair, and now the two have a bookstore café in central Istanbul, in a neighborhood that is home to many Syrian refugees.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Mohammad, Syrian Refugee:
“Syrian people are well-educated people. In Syria we used to have to many book stores. So by doing this we are trying to inspire the whole community.”

Mohammad fled Turkey after being detained for 9 months.

SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Mohammad, Syrian Refugee:
“I feel safe in Turkey. Turkey was the only refuge for me when my life was in danger.”

SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We can say that this country open doors for us.”

SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Mohammad, Syrian Refugee:
“I loved the owner.”

SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“I told him always that I make the base and he makes the building.”

At the end of last year, the business received a start-up grant from UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency two months ago.

Nada and Mohammad used the money to buy more books for the library and to publish their first homegrown product – a “creative diary” designed by Nada.

SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We made the extension of the company. We made our name. We bought some books so we made our library bigger and we published our new product - a creative calendar.”

Alongside their own calendar sit Arabic novels and children’s books.

SOUNDBITE (English) Nada, Syrian Refugee:
“We were so happy because we have many dreams. We want to improve our work and push it forward.”

In cooperation with its partners, UNHCR implements livelihood programs in Turkey, including activities to foster and stimulate refugee entrepreneurship.

Turkey is host to the world’s largest refugee population, including more than 3.5 million Syrians who fled the country’s seven-year conflict.

Over 90 per cent of refugees live outside camps in towns, cities and villages across the country, including some half a million Syrians in Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city.
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