”Sila” Young People and Drugs: A new Participatory Approach for Lebanon


The project “SILA - Young People and Drugs: A New Participatory Approach for Lebanon” aims to improve coordination between relevant stakeholders in Lebanon to effectively address drug abuse among youth at the national level. This project is in line with the “Inter-Ministerial Substance Use Response Strategy for Lebanon 2016-2021" launched by the Ministries of Public Health, Social Affairs, Interior, Justice and Education in December 2016. The project is implemented by Skoun, Lebanese Addictions Center, and SoinsInfirmiers et Développement Communautaire, in collaboration with the “National Mental Health Program”, in 5 key regions in Lebanon: Greater Beirut and the cities of Tripoli, Kesserwan, Saida and Tyre.

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 – March 2019
Beneficiaries: Lebanese drug users, in particular young people and groups with specific needs; LGBTIgroups; drug users arrested and involved in a criminal act; families of drug users
Budget: €500,000
Overall objective: Improving the capacity of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and governmental bodies to address problems related to drug abuse among young people in Lebanon


1) Mapping of treatment & prevention services in 5 areas is completed
2) Training of 30 peer educators is completed in each of Beirut, Keserwan, Tripoli, Saida, and Sour
3) Outreach awareness and education interventions targeting the youth are occurring in Beirut, Keserwan, &Tripoli (total number of beneficiaries reached until now is 7,500)
4) Stakeholder Consultation following the presentation of Key findings from mapping of treatment & prevention services
5) Capacity building programmes to MoSA centres' staff, and CSOs in the 5 areas
6) Online survey on substance use trends among the youth (starting April 2018): an open online survey targeting youth aged 18-35. The aim is to better understand the trends and patterns of drug usage among the youth in Lebanon.


Sila mapped drug and non-drug related Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) services in 5 key regions in Lebanon (Greater Beirut and around the cities of Saida, Sour, Tripoli and Keserwan), with a special attention to assessing availability of evidence-based interventions. The mapping exercise presented details on the number and type of CSOs providing drug-related interventions for youth or willing to mainstream to drug education, prevention and harm reduction in their work.
The mapping helped in:
1. Identifying and describing common contextual features: Drug use trends, risk factors, profile of young drug users and others across greater Beirut, Keserwan, Tripoli, Tyre, and Sidon.
2. Identifying and describing the prevention and treatment services including legal, social integration and harm reduction services available in these areas (types, content, how to provide them, staff, gaps ,etc...)
3. Identifying and discussing the internal and external strengths and challenges faced by associations in responding to the drug problem in Lebanon
4. Presenting a set of recommendations as a result of the mapping study

So far, Sila achieved the following:
• 30 peer educators trained 
• 5 educational material developed 
• 25 areas covered 
• 170 total interventions
• 28 average interventions / month 
• 20 collaborations with CSOs/ NGOs
• 4 Health education events
• 7500 total beneficiaries reached 

In the coming months, Sila will:
- Pursue the delivery of Peer outreach services in Sidon, Tyre
- Launch the online survey
Click this link www.skoun.org/survey to take the survey.
- Train MOSAs centers, CSOs, GPs
- Perform strategic meetings with CSOs, governmental entities & peers
- Organize a final national conference