The 8-year long TAKBİ project within the framework of the Turkish and German association cooperation, revitalized Turkish agricultural cooperatives by surmounting challenges, elevating organizational structures, improving service quality, and fostering member satisfaction, leaving a lasting positive impact on the cooperative landscape in Turkey.
Commencing in April 2016, the Turkish–German Association Cooperation, TAKBİ, launched an initiative to fortify selected sector associations of agricultural cooperatives in Turkey. The projects’ aim was to remedy the fragmented cooperative landscape and enhance services for member cooperatives in the project area. Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL), TAKBI was executed by the DGRV – Deutscher Genossenschafts- und Raiffeisenverband e. V. project office in Ankara under the guidance of Teamleader Peter Asmussen. The activities implemented significantly reshaped organizational structures, improved services, and fostered cooperative collaboration. As TAKBI approaches its conclusion in December 2023, DGRV and its Turkish partner organisations can look back on eight years of cooperation and the successful revitalisation of Turkish agricultural cooperatives in the project area.
Collaborating closely with six regional and two central associations, TAKBİ embarked on joint development initiatives. Strategies, organizational structures, and business models were collectively crafted, and a coaching approach ensured the professional development of the association’s technical and management staff, laying the groundwork for effective implementation.
The project’s impact is extensive — 386 trainings with 12,800 participants, 47 training videos, and comprehensive resources on TAKBİ’s YouTube channel. Beyond numbers, the organizational structures of all associations significantly improved, providing a blueprint for future initiatives.
TAKBİ’s success was validated by progress monitoring reports and, more importantly, by the expressed satisfaction of project partners. A survey revealed remarkable outcomes: 92% of the interviewed cooperatives acknowledged an increased diversity of services, 89% noted an enhancement in service quality, and 79% reported heightened satisfaction with their association.
“The project activities and the close cooperation with the DGRV have shown us that our future will grow with cooperatives.” emphasizes Ahmet Ertürk, Chairman of the Board of the Hay-Koop Central Association.
One of the project’s key strengths lays in its methodology — a seamless transfer of knowledge and experience from DGRV to federations and, subsequently, to cooperatives. This streamlined approach facilitated efficiency and success, providing a replicable model for future collaborative initiatives.
The closing event held on November 8, 2023, marked not just the end of this project but also served as a reflection on the impactful cooperation. Representatives from both the Turkish and German Ministry of Agriculture, the Chairmen of the Central Cooperative Associations as well as Andreas Kappes, Head of DGRV’s International Department, celebrated the projects’ successful conclusion and transformative impact. This collaborative effort showcased resilience and dedication, resulting in a positive transformation of Turkey’s cooperative landscape. TAKBİ’s holistic approach focused on organizational structures, service quality, and member satisfaction, fostering a vibrant cooperative ecosystem as Andreas Kappes, summarises:
“Through TAKBİ, we aimed to empower Turkish agricultural cooperatives, addressing challenges with resilience and impactful initiatives. Celebrating eight years of cooperation, TAKBİ stands testament to collaborative efforts and positive change in Turkish agriculture.“
A Project Story of the Month / Andreas Kappes, Head of DGRV’s International Department & Annette Becker, Project Coordinator
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