Tuesday, November 29, 2011

LOST Hits-the-Ground-Running with Its First Women’s Economic Empowerment Project

LOST embarked on the Women’s Economic Empowerment Project (WEEP) in the city of Baalbeck in an effort to enhance the social, economic and political status of women in the Baalbeck-Hermel region so they become more apt players in their community. The first training session of the project was held on the 17th of October 2011 from 10 am and until noon at LOST’s headquarters in Baalbeck.
 LOST’s latest campaign comes at a time when women in the region continue to lack their basic civil rights and the means to access assets necessary for them to lead a life enjoyed by their male counterparts locally and nationally. In most communities of the region, for instance, women lack adequate access to the information necessary to build their character and career and are unaware of their political, economic, religious or social rights. Their presence in the national legislature and in local governing bodies remains nil and their participation in the workforce low, even though women have a constitutional right to participate in public life and to pursue their chosen careers. Furthermore, initiatives for the economic support of women are nonexistent in the region and as thus their chances of professional growth therein are severely undermined. 
To alleviate this problem, LOST has launched WEEP on the 24th of September when it announced the project to the local communities and commenced a marketing campaign to promote the new initiative.
WEEP’s curriculum includes a theoretical part and a practical one. The former is scheduled to last until the first week of December and focuses on educating participants about the principles of entrepreneurship and management and also about information technology. The latter part begins in mid December yet its duration varies on a case-by-case basis. It focuses on providing participants with guidance during the implementation process of the projects incepted by individual participants. WEEP is the first project LOST undertakes which focuses solely on women’s issues in the region.
WEEP is managed by The Lebanese Organization for Studies and Training (LOST) in a joint partnership with Bridging the Divide, a non-profit organization based in the United States aiming at promoting peace, human rights and good governance around the world. WEEP is publicly funded via voluntary donations through a charity fundraising portal called Global Giving, which offers non-profit organizations an avenue to raise the funding necessary to carry out development projects. For more information on WEEP, visit the following link: http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/educate-women-and-girls-in-rural-lebanon/.

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