The Flower Project

The Flower Project: Inspire The Flower, Inspire The World

Istanbul, TurkeyIstanbul, Turkey
Year Founded:
2015
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Idea
Budget: 
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

The Flower Programme is an initiative that supports empowerment for not only a selected group of women, but invites and supports all women from different backgrounds, educational levels and geographies who wants to create any kind of positive impact in professional life and community.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if a girl from Şanlıurfa has the chance to shadow Fortune 500 CEO's? What if a young lady from Erzurum finds an opportunity to make a change in a multinational? What if someone who is not as lucky as others finds a way to shine better than everyone?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In Turkey, we still have a long way to fully ensure gender equality and women empowerment. Although we have brilliant examples of successful and independent women in professional life, we still have a lot of amazing talents, brains and hearts that we cannot touch and bring in professional, economic and social life. Unfortunately, lots of companies do not use the power that they have to win more women. The Flower Program is there to help.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

The Flower Program has three sub-initiatives: 1. The Flower Internship: We collaborate with companies to provide an internship vacancy for a group of young ladies from peripheral of Turkey. The main prerequisite for being able to join that internship is to be based in and study outside of major cities such as İstanbul, Ankara, İzmir and Bursa. 2. The Flower Keynote: We find women stories from different educational levels, socioeconomic conditions and geographies and sponsor them for being a keynote speaker in multinational, professional and social events to inspire everyone. We simply switch the roles. 3. The Flower Pool: We accept sponsorships from everyone who wants to invest in women empowerment and support the dreams of women.

Awards

The project is in idea phase.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

We want to make a young lady who is not as lucky as others see and feel how does working in professional life look like. We want to make the internship positions in multinations expand and invite young ladies from not only some selected universities or cities but also count girls from other cities, universities and backgrounds. Think that, Betül is a young lady from Gaziantep University. She wants to do something. She has the passion and ambition to change her life and change the world. She has the natural talent for being successful in professional life and inspiring others - but unfortunately she is eliminated by HR Departments since she is not studying in some selected universities of Turkey. The Flower Internship is there to help.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

The project is in the idea phase but we support that we will have an amazing impact for both sides. Let's think The Flower Internship once again. We want to get in touch with Unilever, Pfizer, Microsoft, Henkel, IBM, Vodafone, GE and many other big corporations to make them provide a specific vacancy for just candidates of The Flower Internship other than their regular candidates for professional internships. It will be amazing for young ladies since they will have the same chance to experience professional life with others and we will provide them a positive discrimination. On the other hand, it will be a kind of CSR Project for multinationals and they can also increase the diversity of their organizations and reach the amazing talent from all over the country rather then just searching them in a selected group. We believe that The Flower Internship will create amazing success stories.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

We are an NGO that brings companies and flowers together - It is a 100% voluntary effort. We do not have any concerns for replication or adoption of the idea since the only thing we want to do is helping the empowerment of women from different backgrounds and we are more than welcomed to grow with other people. We are targeting to add 10 Companies/Year to the internship pool and we are expecting at least 5 Vacancies/Year from each company. With that way, we want to place minimum 50 Girls/Year. It will grow exponantially and we expect at least 2500 Girls/10 Years who take the advantage of it.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

We need a huge support to make our dreams real and to make a change in the world. We should cover all the expenses of the ladies during the programme including but not limited to accomodation, transportation, meals and internship salary. Similarly, we want to be the sponsor of the women for The Flower Keynote and we want to raise The Flower Pool Fund. We need the full support of companies and investors to make them all possible.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The Flower Project has a very tangible action plan for not only a short period of time, but also sustainable for years. We target young women but we are aiming to do never-before-done. We are looking out of the box and asking the question of 'What if we provide the same opportunities to girls who are not as lucky as others?' We are questioning 'What if we support not only a selected group of women but also all women during the journey of being the great leader of tomorrow?' We want to find the answer of 'What if we switch the roles with women who have obstacles?' We are changing perceptions.
Team

Founding Story

As a graduate of Bilkent University Industrial Engineering Department, I completed lots of internships in multinationals, I participated numereous of selection bootcamps, interview days or case studies and I was the member of different organizations to develop myself personally and professionally. In all of them, I always see that my social environment is full of my copies. Similar universities, similar backgrounds, similar skills and similar goals. We are selected as successful but I realized that we all have the same chance and we all started our journey from similar points. There are no diversity, both for me and for the corporations. And I said, 'How can I change it?'

Team

I will invest all money for starting the project. I work at SAP as a full time employee but if I can find support, I can invest all my time to my project. I want to make it grow by adding strong references to our corporate pool that supports The Flower Internship, I want to be able to sponsor all young ladies during their internship period and I want to remove financial conditions as a concern for them that blocks their participation to the internship. Also, I want to find inspiring women stories from the peripheral cities for The Flower Keynote and I want to be able to sponsor them to visit İstanbul and deliver keynotes by switching the roles with professional women. If I can have the required fund to make my two projects real, I want to save money in The Flower Pool and use that money to sponsor the dreams of women if they have entrepreneurial ideas or if they want to study abroad or any kind of scholarships.
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

Website of Changemakers

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

Founder

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

Gender Equality.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

This is my first project but previously I have taken part in different community tasks, networks and charities. I'm also a member of Turkish Women's International Network which is a global networking platform for successful women in Turkey - It can also open me some doors while negotiating with companies for The Flower Internship.

Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

I have some mentors from professional life that I share my ideas and take advice.

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