Dawric – Direct Action for Women: Reform, Inclusion and Confidence

Summary

The project “DAWRIC - Direct Action for Women: Reform, Inclusion and Confidence”aims to build women’s capacity and to provide broad-based support for their active involvement in combating poverty among Lebanese women and ensuring gender equality in the political and decision-making realm. DAWRIC’s activities are implemented in 22 towns across four Lebanese governorates in the North, the South, the Bekaa and in Beirut/Mount Lebanon.

This project is funded by the European Union under the “Social Justice Programme”, which is comprised of eight projects. The programme’s objective is to advocate for democracy, human rights and social justice in Lebanon, promoting good governance and gender equality at its core. Overall, the programme supports the strengthening of the institutional framework for the protection of human rights and the development of democratic governance in Lebanon.

Budget, timeframe, scope, beneficiaries
Implementation period: September 2016 – September 2018.
Beneficiary: Municipalities, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Community Based Organisations (CBOs), Lebanese citizens
Budget: €989,786.03
Overall objective: Promoting gender equality in Lebanon in the political and decision-making realms at both local and national levels; building women’s capacity for their active involvement in public life to combat women’s poverty in urban and rural areasand to lobby for equality.

Project purpose

• Ensuring women’s active involvement in the local decision-making processes with the support of local communities
• Establishing a greater representation of the issues faced by poor women residing in urban and rural areas in local authorities’ priorities
• Facilitate national and emerging coalitions to advance women’s participation in public life
• Ensuring that advocacy campaigns such as ‘Women participation in public life’ designed and managed through evidence-based data

Activities


• Build the capacity of local partners, NCLW and concerned ministries on Action Research and identified two key priorities:
- Women political participation
- Personal statuses law
• Improved, through evidence-based data, the design and management of “women participation in public life” advocacy campaigns
• Engaged with 40 journalists and built their capacity to better cover women’s issues
• Funding 21 community-led initiatives designed and implemented at grassroots levels
• Building the capacities of 200 community facilitators for them to transmit their knowledge to over 4,500 people in 20 areas


Updates

In February and March 2017, DAWRIC organised four sessions to introduce the project and to discuss how to best establish a partnership between the municipalities, the British Council and the European Union. The first introductory session took place in Tripoli and was attended by representatives from several municipalities from North Lebanon. Two sessions were later held in the South (in Saida and in Hasbaya), followed by a session in Beirut and Mount Lebanon and finally in the Bekaa.

The DAWRIC project has so far also organised focus group workshops to discuss the project’s proposed activities with Civil Society Organisations and municipality representatives that will be involved in the implementation phase.
DAWRIC planned a series of capacity building sessions that will take place in the four Lebanese governorates of the North, the South, Beirut/Mount Lebanon and the Bekaa. The sessions will tackle different topics, such as gender sensitization, English and vocational skills, entrepreneurship, and media and communications.

Trained community facilitators cascaded their knowledge through a series of 160 gender sensitization sessions to a total group of 4,500 women and men in the targeted 21 villages/towns: 3,500 people were reached so far. The next step will be an entrepreneurship training for 21 women who will then cascade this training to 200 other women.

The project provided the four municipalities and Civil Society Organisations in the area the opportunity to establish women committees and to benefit from Social Action projects.
Local partners were trained on how women can build effective strategies to identify issues affecting their communities through a participatory approach: how they can be actors of change and how they can engage with the local decision making processes to drive reform initiatives and advocacy campaigns at the local level. 21 Social Action Projects were submitted by local NGOs. The submitted proposals were evaluated by both the British Council and the EU Delegation to Lebanon. The project is currently signing the contracts with the local NGOs and municipalities so it can disperse the grants by the end of March 2018. In addition, around 3 women committees are now constituted and 18 will be formed in each municipality to identify needs and to monitor the implementation of the social action projects.

Another activity in the making is the training of journalists to report on women’s issues and to encourage a coalition of NGOs and CBOs for the implementation of advocacy plans and of research at the national level. 25 journalists were trained in order to have the proper skills to cover women issues and to ensure gender sensitive reporting. Each journalist will submit at least one article/report that will be published by the NNA (National News Agency) and on Maharat official website. Also, an external evaluator will be recruited in the 3d week of March 2018 to evaluate the awareness campaign.