bullet “New Generation School”- Hasbaya/decree no. 2953 in 1983
bullet “Lebanese Artisanal Co-Operative 526/1” 1993
bullet “Committee for Sofar Festivals no 94/AD” 1994
bullet Technical School in Aley in 1997
bullet LWLC in partnership with the GLC in Toledo-Ohio 2001
bullet “Hasbaya Infirmary for Women” 2002
bullet Blindness Prevention Program
bullet Social Awareness program
bullet The Report
bullet Women Empowerment Program
The “New Generation School”- Hasbaya:

The school (licensed by decree 2953) founded in 1983, enrolls between 200 to 300 students with symbolic tuition. It follows the Lebanese official program and teaches 3 languages
The “New Generation School” in Hasbaya was founded in 1983 to cater for the educational need in the region. Around 300 students were unable to enter any school because the two schools available at that time had no capacity. Moreover, the region was under Israeli siege and the moving to and from neighboring villages was costly and unsafe. We hired the building of the “Waqf” and we’ve been there for 21 years. We hope to overcome the financial hardships to build a private school premises in the future, with the requirements for proper learning and school-life.

The school was refurbished and equipped in July 2003 by a grant offered by USAID.
One of the items purchased by the Grant were 6 computers to which we added another four, which enabled us to initiate at the school premises a program “Children Computer Literacy”. Its purpose is to introduce the notion of computer work to the children of the area at a young age.

Construction of a new Premises
A new premises, is under construction on a piece of land that was bought with a generous donation from H.H Sheikh Nahyan Moubarak Al Nahyan.
The new premises will include:
  - Kindergarten, Primary & Intermediate school
  - The Hasbaya Women Infirmary
  - Nursing school.
The Nursing School will be a one year program open to students who reached the intermediate fourth class & they graduate as an Assistant Nurse.

Our future plan is to develop the Nursing School to a 3 years program thus graduating specialized nurses.
 This program is a necessary opportunity to those who cannot or do not want to continue their studies. It enables them to get a profession & find a job.


The “Society of Lebanese Artisanal Cooperative 526/1”

Poverty that reigned over rural remote areas urged us to search for a way to help people to sustain themselves specially women who depended on male members of the family. So we established the “Society of Lebanese Artisanal Co-operative 526/1” in 1993, which served a wide strata of needy women most of whom became self-sufficient in spite of the fact that they didn’t have the chance to be educated and had no opportunities to work. So we planned our fund-raising activities on the basis of Artisanal and handicrafts production and marketing. We organized exhibitions locally and internationally. This policy had a double benefit of ensuring continuity for the artisan and revenue for the “Society” which enabled us to meet our responsibilities.

The tasks were:

bullet Grouping artisans from all the regions of Lebanon.
bullet Supervising the production of artisans
bullet Counseling and orienting artisans
bullet Training in Artisanal and handicrafts domain
bullet Organizing exhibitions to show and market the production

578 women were trained in and graduated from the school.

Lately new training sessions were added to the existing ones in the handicrafts domain opening new horizons & availing new jobs.
1- Nol Beading
2- Accessories craftwork


The “Committee of Sofar Festivals 94/AD”

Established in 1994 to promote the Society’s social role in remote areas where social, cultural and economic activities are needed. We organized many successful activities all through summer seasons, thus promoting tourism in the area.
We organized many events like:
bullet Concerts
bullet Exhibitions
bullet Traditional costume shows (Abayas)
bullet Traditional dinners

Those events gave the region vitality and were economically beneficial and socially successful. One of the basic aims was to train young people to work together and accept each other even when their ideas conflict. This target left a remarkable impact even though in a limited area and on a limited level. Group work versus individuality, which is one of the defaults of our society, will always be our concern.


The “Technical School in Aley”

The school is sponsored and run by the Society.
Its Courses:
  1. Languages: English for males and females, 2 classes with 15-20 students each (2 sessions/week; 2 hrs/session) for beginners.
    Classes for adults willing to learn and/or improve their English language were and still are open twice a week. The US Embassy in Beirut provided the free of charge material, books and video/cassettes and the classes are also for free.
    Earlier we arranged annually free special sessions for students sitting for official exams in remote areas like Sofar and Sharoun, which are considered central to the neighboring villages.
  2. Tailoring: courses organized once every six months with maximum 22 students (2 sessions/week; 2 hrs/session).
  3. Hand Embroidery: courses organized once every six months with maximum 18 students (2 sessions/week; 2 hrs/session). We depend on catalogues and CDs for new modern designs.
  4. Painting on silk: Maximum six students organized upon request.
  5. Machine Embroidery: two classes with 2 students each (2 sessions/week; 4 hrs/session. For this activity, last year we had 32 apprentices 8 of which continue till April 2004.

    Continuous training in the handicrafts domain is still taking place with concentration on machine embroidery; to respond to market demand & trainees willingness. Every year 70-80 women are graduating in different technical skills. Two new Technical trainings are added since last year:

    1. Make-up sessions
    2. Hair Dressing sessions

    Our graduates are finding jobs easily & sometimes are working on their own. Most of the time, those who excel from among them become employees at the Society atelier. Their production competes with the most refined international Handicrafts production & the success of our exhibitions all over the world is the evidence.
    In 2007 the Society received a generous donation from H.H Sheikha Jawaher wife of H.H Sheikh Sultan Qassimi governor of Sharja Principality.

    The donation enabled the Society to buy a piece of land in Aley to build a “Center for Women Vocational Training” embracing the Technical School,  a hall for a permanent Exhibition & a Pavillion for events. The donation realized our dreams in locating our Society in descent headquarters.
    We will soon publicize the plan on this site.


The “Lebanese Woman Leadership Consortium”

The LWLC represents the Great Lakes Consortium for International Training and Development sponsored by the “US State Department Bureau of Educational And Cultural Affairs Office of Citizen Exchanges”.

The President of the Society Princess Hayat Arslan participated in March 2001 in an exchange program “Lebanese Women in Political Leadership”. The aim of the program of 2001 as stated by the organizers is “to enhance the capacity of program participants to play an extended role in rebuilding Lebanon”. It gives the participants the chance to learn about the American political process, opportunities for women in government, mobilizing resources, running for office, public-private partnership etc”.

After extensive discussions to make the most possible benefit from the program we established the LWLC to be partners with the GLC working for the benefit of both societies.

WE advocate:

bullet The necessity of the Lebanese women to be incorporated in public service.
bullet The learning and benefiting from others’ experience.
bullet The Promotion of practical workings of institutions.
bullet Women Participation in decision-making.
bullet Following Democracy and Law on the national and the international levels.
We believe that they are the principle requirements to organize the world, spare humanity the atrocities of wars and make the World a better one.

Lebanese Women Leadership is the question. Can a Lebanese woman be a leader?! Historically the answer is yes and currently she has to be given the opportunity and this is what the LWLC will be working for.

The status of women in Lebanon still needs a lot of work on the level of rules and regulations as well as on the public opinion specially the awareness of women themselves of their rights.

The program “Strengthening Non-Governmental Organizations in Lebanon” is the common current event we (GLC & LWLC) are coordinating. In May-June six ladies representing six NGOs in the six regions of Lebanon will have the chance of participating in this program. They will extend their experience to other local NGOs by training them & organizing pertaining workshops. Each participant will be responsible for the region she represents. An American follow-up committee will visit Lebanon few months after the end of the program.

In this context we organized a campaign advocating women political quota funded by AMIDEAST in November 2004. The campaign consisted of:

  1. Petition signature for Constitution amendment (Visit to 128 Deputies)
  2. Awareness Campaign (Billboards plastering
  3. Media (TV , Radio stations)
  4. Popular Campaign ( Flyers distribution in the streets, Malls & public places)
  5. Activity Documenting (Book publishing المرأة شريك أساسي في القرار السياسي)

The application we submitted to AMIDEAST expressed our belief in women role & complimented our activity in this field. Here we find it useful to mention its head lines:
Believing in equality & equal chances& in an era where intellect, capacity, education & knowledge are the criteria, there is no justification for discrimination against women. In Lebanon, in particular, women gained credibility due to their ability to achieve high standards in education, business & administration.
Those facts enhanced women status in all fields of social & economical life but not the political one.
Political involvement of women is a national duty & human rights at the same time & the way to facilitate this role is the adoption of the quota system as a transitional period. This is also a call for public responsibility balance, where men & women share the duty. The cornerstone for a typical society is giving the opportunity to every willing capable person to participate in decision making through Democratic practices.

 
The campaign added to earlier Women efforts resulted in including Women political Quota in the new electoral Law which unfortunately is not yet ratified because of the political situation in Lebanon.


“Hasbaya Infirmary for Women”

The Women Infirmary in Hasbaya was established in 2002 to satisfy an urgent need for medical care. The conservative society in the region and the lack of women doctors were basic in implementing the idea and thus the infirmary was established and restricted to women and children.

Four women doctors visit all round the week (two days/week each).
The Infirmary provides tests for Eyesight, Osteoporoses and Glands and provides as well Physical therapy and Laboratory services.
The number of patients from 1/11/2001 till 10/12/2002 is: 3420
 
bullet 1487 examined
bullet 1933 re-consulting

The number of patients from 11/12/2002 till 1/8/2003 is: 1788

bullet 690 examined
bullet 1098 re-consulting

The number of patients from 2/8/2003 till 15/1/2004 is: 805

bullet 193 examined
bullet 612 re-consulting

Laboratory services were rendered to 293 patients.
The Doctors are working under contacts with the Society with symbolic fees. The patients pay symbolic fares.

New statistics
2006-2007, number of visiting patients 2142
Drs with symbolic fees:
Ludmella Tawil
Laure Malek Sabah Karam
Marielle Nammour
Ala’ Ramadan
Shourouk Alame’


Blindness Prevention Program

We, the “Society of Lebanon the Giver”, planned, organized and implemented the Blindness Prevention Program in coordination with IMPACT, a welfare association headed by H.H Prince “Abdel Aziz Bin Ahmad Bin Abdel Aziz Al Saoud”.
It was a pilot project restricted to the Aley region in the district of Mount Lebanon. The target was students of public schools- a part of the needy strata where poverty and ignorance could lead to any disability; we believe the saddest is blindness.
The implementation began in November 1996 and was completed in July 1997 throughout the following steps:

bullet A tripartite committee with daily coordination (Society, Impact and the ophthalmologists).
bullet Society: fieldwork
bullet IMPACT: instructing, sorting results, coming up with the statistics, paying symbolic fees for the ophthalmologists and buying the eyeglasses for the students.
bullet Ophthalmologists.

 

Around 10,000 students in 52 schools were screened: The health instructor/s at each school screened the students and noted out those who should be transferred to the ophthalmologists. The doctors examined 885 students and prescribed eyeglasses for 574 students. The eyeglasses were distributed at the Society’s Headquarters in the presence of journalists.

Six months later, the Society sent letters to the schools asking about the performance of the students who were given eyeglasses. The answer was that there was progress, they could follow better the explanation on the board and evidently read more easily.

 


Social Awareness program

The Society implemented this program in Nov 2003 (From 14 till 25/11/2003). It took us eight months (beginning 10 February till 3 September) of discussions to prove to the Amideast that our project was valid and approved it to be funded by USAID.

Below is our latest proposal to Amideast and the report after 24 shows

Title: Theater Play (BALA WASTA)
Objective: Promote awareness of citizens’ rights and duties.
The clan affiliation is a harmful element in our society; it affects the concept of patriotism. Citizenship comes second to clan, religion and political inclinations; instead of being a good citizen, the person becomes a good subject to a political or religious leader.
The fact that the citizen needs “WASTA” in any affair supports this situation. We need to eradicate “WASTA” and replace it with the MERIT system. When we apply and practice the concept of “the right person is in the right place”, people will become more able to liberate themselves from subduing to leaders; consequently the administration becomes more effective and many problems Lebanon is facing could be solved.
 

Focus: Rights are directly related to accountability from the leader, politician, to the policeman. Duties are directly related to transparency and the net result should be good governance. After all, the three objectives are tightly interrelated and cannot be isolated from rights and duties. It is a chain maintained and fortified by citizens and public awareness


Until then, we need to educate the public about their rights and duties; we need to introduce to them concepts of accountability and transparency. People need to practice their rights and duties; they need to know that they are citizens who have certain rights and at the same time they have duties; one of the basic rights is to get what they are entitled to without any interference or wasta; one of their basic duties is to respect laws and to watch on the officials who are running public affairs and holding them accountable. We will try to do that through the production of a play.

Medical Awareness: Medical awareness is a yearly program aimed at raising awareness in various topics:
• Hygiene
• Smoking
• Vaccination
The medical awareness meetings are always organized with the collaboration of doctors, specialists, psychologists & sociologists.

The medical awareness campaigns are organized in collaboration with the minister of health (lately Breast Cancer Campaign Oct- Nov 2007), minister of Social affairs, Embassies & Civil Societies.

War Relief Campaign
Food supplies, medications , clothes , mattresses, hygienic products, school bags donated by UAE Red Crescent, Kuwait red Crescent were distributed to over 50 villages.

 

 

 


The Report

The shows of the theatre play “Bala Wasta” began on the 14th of November 2003, two shows a day. Students of public and private schools as well as university students attended.

The audience found it interesting, direct, daring and realistic.

The play was deep and serious colored by the traditional comic personality, Geha. The fall in the elections of the “Zaim” who depended on mediating in favor of his followers to stay in power; was most appreciated.

There was a response to the ideas we wanted to ring a bell at the students’ minds like:
The silent strata should speak their minds; the change will come if not today, tomorrow. No one should loose one’s dignity to gain a favor and beg a leader to mediate in quest for people’s rights’, the Constitution, rules and regulations should keep everybody’s rights and not the privileged only.

The future generation possesses the power of change and the elections are the tools for the change in the prevailing system.

Some schools included questions in the tests about the importance of the play in the future national life.

Some others will present it on the graduation Day
I am sorry to note that to my surprise I was blamed to preach a change in the prevailing relation between the leader and the people because many of the leading families consider that this issue shouldn’t be changed. Other friends were astonished that a member of a leading family could preach for a change. This attitude emphasized my conviction that this orientation should continue to break the vicious circle that binds us to feudal system and tribal relations. The importance is the survival of the country without which neither leaders nor leading families will survive.

Amideast Assessment:
“I am happy to convey this message from Amideast commenting on the impact of the play:
In an attempt to promote awareness for citizens' rights and duties among youth, the Society of Lebanon the Giver developed and produced a play entitled, Bala Wasta, which focused on nepotism, wasta, misuse of authority and official positions, and corruption. The play was performed in November for approximately 8,000 students by a dynamic team of actors with great success, which was very well received by all who attended the performances.
AMIDEAST thanks the Society of Lebanon the Giver for their exceptional efforts, creativity, and resourcefulness for making this project a real success, one that we hope will be continued to benefit all of Lebanon.”
Women Empowerment Program

This Program is meant to encourage women to play an extended role in Social & political life in Lebanon. Because; one of the gaps, which should urgently be bridged, is the deteriorated political status of Lebanese women. To make up for this deterioration wide, rapid & steady steps should be taken. Governmental & Non-Governmental organizations are requested to give this subject enough attention especially that municipal & parliamentary elections will take place soon.

Essential steps are necessary to trigger the process, which has long been the issue with different intensities varying according to circumstances. Now the circumstances are favorable & the subject is mature thus the efforts will be fruitful. ”. Earlier we advocated the principles and values of judging and evaluating people according to capacity irrespective of gender. It didn’t work out, and women were left in perpetual second-class citizenship. This inherited mentality is at the basis of the social history of the region and it continues to be the equation and needs women concerted efforts to change it. Here the need is to train the mentality on the fact that men and women are equal when it comes to mental and intellectual capacities and politics apply to those capacities. On the governmental level the work should be on amending rules by adding the quota system-for a transitional period- because the constitution safeguards women’s rights. Equality with men & full rights cannot be complete without the political part.

This means that women have the right to occupy governmental posts in their country and to represent their country abroad. The rights of women fall in the context of the good of the society, which makes the whole society a productive and cooperating entity. But unfortunately we need to always remind men our partners in humanity that we are there awake and aware of this social illness.

Moreover political involvement for both men and women touches deeply on family relations. We still make politics on individual basis, with three dimensions:
 
bullet Family history, inheritance since Feudalism
bullet Personal relations, common interests and power
bullet Lately unfortunately money, the most powerful with the economic crisis

The feudal lords are transformed now to money lords and in between there were the warlords during the war years. In the three classes women are absent. No doubt that the customs and heritage of feudal families give priority to male members of the family, they are ready to accept female representation only if males are not there or not ready yet, age wise. During war years women’s role in military action was limited to few individuals who participated, so no women were rewarded by parliamentary or ministerial positions. While in civil life their role was great in conserving and backing the family and clan morally and economically.

The involvement in politics on individual basis, still impose great efforts and personal interference in matters like mediating, helping and serving. Moreover a politician should be present in social events like weddings, funerals etc… The alternative is Parties, which is the basic foundation for political life and which is still the sheer cover of personal political leadership. This means that political involvement implies receiving people at home and hospitality is the measure of a successful politician. The traditional term “open house”; and lately with less appreciation from people, open office is the essential factor for success. No matter at what time of the day or the night a dedicated politician must be ready to serve. This can be -and it should be -changed by strengthening political parties and passing laws of obligatory candidacy from within a party or organization. Equality in front of the law will also eradicate mediating. When laws and regulations give citizens their rights then the politician will do his/her right job in legislating and planning for the country and not to consume time and energy for individuals. Moreover the system enhances the status quo by distributing public positions as shares on communal and regional basis. Instead it should be based on qualifications and efforts and accountability should be there for judgment. Clan and tribe still dominate the political scene and they usually prefer to choose men.
(It is a terrible contradiction between the wide step of social progress and the prevailing political stagnation).

There are women who are potential political leaders and they should be given the chance to show their talents and to overcome social, political and psychological pressures. They should be encouraged to get involved in political life with a practical and moral push to those who are still hesitant and have the potential. We expect numerous women to be nominated for the next elections and the new ministry.

bullet Group work v/s individualism: we trained people in villages to work in groups and to accept each other. We showed them how effective is coordination and co-operation to overcome individualism and its negative impact on society.


This Program was at the basis of the establishment of the Committee for women Political Empowerment 15/AD. Its aims & objectives:

  1. Women Awareness of her rights
  2.  Duty to participate in “National Decision Making”.
  3. Women & men have similar roles in building the Society & the Nation
  4. The roles of men & women compliment & meet to build a better society 

The advocacy was enriched by three Conferences:
- UNESCO Palace- Beirut 26/6/2004 المرأة في الإستحقاق الحكومي
- House of Lawyers 21/9/2004 التشريعات التي تسهل دخول المرأة الحياة السياسية

- UNESCO Palace 21&22/5/2006


 
     
 

Home | About Us | Achievements | Programs | News | Contact Us