Getting start-up funding in cold Damascus

Fun, sacrifice and a certain obsessiveness got me going but, of course, starting a start-up needs money. I worked, saved and invested my money back into the Charity.  I had the help of a friend who managed to get us a donation of just over £4,000. But initially, it really was about the volunteer spirit, and what I was willing to give. (I don’t come from a wealthy background, so nope, I’m not one of those rich kids with money).

Friends and family are a great source of support. Lynch them unashamedly.

Party! – do it. Syria was a small community of internationals, and everyone had connections or something to offer. It was worth investing in those late nights. Trawl those parties and network like crazy.

Produce – I happily created professional looking documents seated on the floor of an old Damascus house. What I didn’t know, I improvised.

Ask for help – I asked for help form everyone, I knew I didn’t know things and it didn’t bother me. My cause was greater than my own ego. I asked Google, I asked friends, I asked friends of friends I asked and I ended up with some great answers as well as practical support

Dropping my own assumptions: Observe what is happening around you and see how you can work with what is in front of you.  Not having an NGO background made me more creative, I didn’t have any assumptions about how things should be and that freed me.

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