Svensk partner: Karlstads kommun

Cooperative Company – an opportunity

As a result of the inception phase for a municipality partnership, which was completed in summer 2009, the Municipality Office, the Department for Culture and Leisure and the Department for Employment and Social Services in Karlstad have the intention of running two projects in cooperation with the Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality. The two municipalities of Gaziantep and Karlstad are formal sister/twin cities, since 2008.

The project coordinated by the Department for Employment and Social Service’s project “Cooperative Company – an opportunity” intends to develop opportunities for cooperative entrepreneurship for people that have difficulties to enter the labour market and focuses primarily on low educated women in the district of Bey Mahallesi in Gaziantep.

The goal of this project is to raise the employment rate among low educated women in the Bey Mahallesi district through education of co-operators, thereby creating conditions for and enabling them to stay on living in the district. As an additional objective, the project will provide deepened and new perspectives on these activities in operation in Karlstads kommun.

The expected results are that a specified number of co-operators will have been trained ant that the knowledge and understanding of cooperative entrepreneurship and its potential will increase in Gaziantep. In Karlstad competence and know-how will be developed by running a training programme for new target groups in a different cultural setting.

The project duration is planned for two years with two project meetings in Karlstad and three meetings in Gaziantep.


As a result of the inception phase for a ICLD municipality partnership, which was completed in summer 2009, the Municipality Office, the Employment and Social Services Administration in Karlstad got granted two municipality partnership projects in cooperation with the Gaziantep Metropolitan Municipality our twin city since 2008.

The objective of this project is to develop Karlstads and Gazianteps respective youth work by education, cooperation and showing the potential of cultural youth exchanges effect when it comes to democracy work.

We will mainly work with three subjects:

  • Youth participation
  • Youth influence
  • Youth initiatives

The municipality of Karlstad, together with Gaziantep, considers these three subjects as the general factors that our cities can tackle together. Representatives from Karlstad and Gaziantep have jointly identified needs and possibilities to develop the cities respective as well as common forums for the participation, influence and initiatives of young people. In Gaziantep the project will be implemented in the central districts Sehitkamil and Sohinbey.

These three subjects can be seen as three steps to develop our cities youth work. Youth participation is a necessity for a functional democracy and for a functional youth work. To reach and maintain functional youth participation there must be youth influence, and one of the greatest forms of influence is the possibility to present and accomplish initiatives. Culture and democracy are the two perspectives where Karlstad and Gaziantep can address and tackle the three subjects most effectively.

We also aim to identify and develop methods to increase the participation of young people’s knowledge about effecting policy-making in each country, both as individuals and as groups or organisations.

This project will be implemented during a two year period of 2011 and 2012 with a total of four exchanges, two in each country. The expected result regarding youth related questions about democracy is based on the three subject’s participation, influence and initiative. One result is to increase the possibility to participate and influence on a local level for Turkish youth. Increase the possibility for youth to take initiative, to cultural events for a start and, long term also concerning democracy and influence.