Back in the Boat

Speeches Shim

Friday, April 9, 2021
With support from USAID, Arkan was able to purchase a new boat and fishing equipment to restart his business.

Since he was ten years old, Arkan would go to the Tigris River early mornings to fish and sell his catch in Mosul’s old market. This was his daily routine until the fighting against ISIS shook his life forever: his father was killed, his house and fishing boat were destroyed in the air strikes, and Arkan fled to safety. 

When Arkan returned home, the first thing he did was to start fishing again. He spent his savings on a new boat but then had to sell it shortly after when his daughter got sick and needed expensive treatment. Without a boat, Arkan was without a livelihood and was worried about not being able to provide for his family. 

With support from USAID, Arkan purchased a new boat and fishing equipment to restart his business. Arkan also received business advice from job coaches to help increase his earnings and develop his own fishing business. Now, in the early mornings, you can find Arkan back in his happy place on the Tigris River, patiently waiting for his daily catch.

This story was made possible through USAID's funding to the Marla Ruzicka Iraqi War Victims Fund, which supports the recovery of innocent victims of war. To learn more about USAID and the Marla Fund, click here. 

Last updated: May 10, 2022

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