Empowering Civil Society Organizations in Lebanon
The spillover from the civil war in Syria has had a profound impact on Lebanon, with more than 30 percent of its current population comprised of refugees fleeing the violence and setting up makeshift settlements throughout Lebanon.
The increasing demands of this refugee population has created a significant drain upon Lebanon’s capacities and resources, resulting in the government’s inability to ensure delivery of necessary public services to its growing population.
We implement the USAID-funded program, Building Alliances for Local Advancement, Development and Investment – Capacity Building (BALADI CAP), to build capacity within more than 50 civil society organizations. Ultimately, by strengthening internal governance, financial management, and monitoring and evaluation (M&E), they will be better prepared to help their communities.
We use a three-tier customized approach—as every partner is at a different level of organizational development—but each participates in intensive training workshops, on-the-job training, coaching, mentorship, and communities of practice. The project builds upon previous projects we have implemented. We focus on three priorities:
- Environmental protection and conservation
- Human rights, including women, children, and other vulnerable and disadvantaged populations
- Governance accountability and transparency
We also work to build the capacity of municipalities to engage with citizens in local policy and decision-making.
Civil society, as a result of the program, is able to take on a larger leadership role in donor programs. Moreover, civic culture is strengthened to allow for participation in public affairs, informed public debate, and the competition of ideas not following sectarian and confessional lines.