Supporting Women’s Empowerment and Rights in Lebanon
In Lebanon, we are working to advance gender equality and the increased role of women in civil society organizations (CSOs) and local municipal governance. Funded by USAID, the BALADI CAP project helps bring focus to promoting women’s rights and ensuring that their voices are heard.
Under the project’s approach, we awarded a series of advocacy grants through our Human Rights Advocacy Network, focused on addressing the discrimination and stigma faced by vulnerable women in the workplace. This includes women who are survivors of intimate partner violence, sex workers, former drug addicts and prisoners, and members of the LGBTQ community.
Our activities, including “know your rights” and advocacy campaigns, and anti-discrimination labor policies, are considered a first within the Lebanese CSO community.
Through a partnership with “Soins Infirmiers et Developpement Communautaire” (SIDC), we supported its launch of a one-year project, “Supporting Vulnerable Women’s Rights Activity.” It was comprised of 10 stories that reflect the real-life experiences of women who engaged in sex for money.
This campaign, which garnered over 5,000 shares on social media raised public awareness about this vulnerable community for the first time, is geared to improve the rights of women sex workers.
Furthermore, with our support, SIDC enhanced the institutional capacity of seven urban social service centers that provide services to protect women from abuse when accessing health care and social support.
“The project allowed this vulnerable community to raise its voice, so that they are not muted anymore. The outcomes of this project are key resources for people working in the healthcare and social services sector. These people should be defending those women throughout their work and not play the role of the oppressor," said Dr. Huwaida Abi Ramya, head of the Social Work Department at Saint Joseph University in Beirut.