Tuesday, February 18, 2014

“Syrian-Lebanese Youth Fellowship Program”, an Empowering Initiative in Baalbeck by Action Aid, Arab Regional Initiative (ARI)

The Lebanese Organization of Studies and Training initiated the “Syrian-Lebanese Youth Fellowship Program”, a pilot project sponsored by Action Aid, ARI at its premises in Baalbeck on February 2nd, 2014. 

The project aims at identifying and building the capacity of 45 young Syrian refugees aged 17-27 and Lebanese young hosts  in the local Lebanese community of Baalbeck, increasing their ability to identify development needs, and initiating and delivering their own life-enhancing solutions, thus reducing vulnerability of Syrian people to war and empowering them to participate in decisions affecting their future. 

18 educated Syrians and 2 Lebanese youth were selected to participate in the first phase of this pilot project. They went through 12 days training with 2 trainers from Action Aid, Denmark.

This intensive training included workshops on mobilizing people and resources, Needs assessment/documentation and action plan, Linkages with stakeholders, and Advocacy initiatives.

Participants were encouraged to voice their own priorities and risks by highlighting cultural problems that the Syrian community faces in the local context of Baalbeck. Sharing their perceptions, views and analysis with local NGOs, they then conducted community mapping using scientific tools after which they obtained a social document which will be adopted and implemented in the form of a small community service project that can help them to improve the community they live in.

This project will last for six months and can be scaled up reaching out for more participation and larger geographical outreach.

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