November 28, 2013

‘Lessons from a West Bank Sheep Farm’ by McKinsey on Society

We are happy and proud to share, “Lessons from a West Bank Sheep Farm” about Ayah Mlatat, a SPARK supported entrepreneur.  Written by our partner organization McKinsey on Society, the piece focuses on a first hand account of what it’s like to be a female entrepreneur in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.  

McKinsey on Society is the online publishing site for the firm, which houses McKinsey’s latest insights on pressing social issues. The site draws together research and resources from across the firm, in order to share our collective insights on five major societal topics: Global Health, Economic Development, Education, Social Innovation and Sustainability.  

With the aim to work with McKinsey on Society, we will continue to share the McKinsey Voices with the SPARK audience and look forward to being part of the global forum McKinsey Voices has created.  Follow McKinsey voices on Twitter at: @McKinseySociety



Lessons From a West Bank Sheep Farm

In 2010 I set out to build a sheep farm on land that my family owned near the West Bank city of Nablus. As a young sociology student who did volunteer work with children in her spare time, I had no obvious credentials for this project. My gender also worked against me. Farming is considered a man’s job in the Palestinian Territories, as it is in many parts of the world. Nor did I come from a farming family.

Although I grew up in a rural village, my father is an electrical engineer and my mother has a degree in Arabic and works as a schoolteacher. My early interest in agriculture was sparked not by milking cows or shearing sheep but by watching Arabic cartoons about farmers on TV… read more