USAID MISSION DIRECTOR VISITS T.E.R.R.E LIBAN

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1 THEBALADICAPMONTHLY ISSUE #27 - August 2016 USAID MISSION DIRECTOR VISITS T.E.R.R.E LIBAN USAID Lebanon s recently appointed Mission Director, Dr. Anne Patterson, visited T.E.R.R.E Liban s offices to find out more about the Association and more specifically about the impact of the USAID-funded Building Alliances for Local Advancement, Development and Investment Capacity Building (BALADI CAP) program on partner associations and organizations. T.E.R.R.E Liban is an independent Lebanese non-governmental organization devoted to the creation and implementation of environmental education within Lebanon. Paul Abi Rashed, T.E.R.R.E Liban s Founder and President, explained the impact of BALADI CAP s intervention on the governance practices and on the daily activities within the Association, such as the introduction of a better staff recruitment system, a solid accounting system, and an overall much-improved organizational structure. A few years ago we almost had nothing; no proper systems in place and no proper administrative guidelines. But thanks to BALADI CAP, we have been able to take the Association to levels which not so long ago seemed impossible!, said Mr. Abi Rashed. Dr. Patterson also visited the emergency Sorting Center located within the Association s premises. The Center was established to educate people on sorting at source, and was extremely beneficial during the recent Lebanese waste crisis. The success of T.E.R.R.E Liban s capacity building efforts under BALADI CAP has enabled the Association to be a strong candidate to play the role of an Intermediary Support Organization (ISO), under the Civic Engagement Initiative (CEI), to coordinate and support an environmental & solid waste issue network composed of several local CSOs. This will place T.E.R.R.E. Liban in a leading position to achieve impact on advocacy by building national networks on environmental advocacy, thanks to BALADI CAP s continuous support. This publication is made possible with the support of the American People through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of the contractor and does not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

2 THE HUMAN RIGHTS NETWORK A STEP CLOSER As a new component under the USAID-funded Building Alliances for Local Advancement, Development and Investment Civic Engagement Initiative (BALADI CAP) project, the Civic Engagement Initiative (CEI) seeks to enhance democracy, human rights and good governance in Lebanon by broadening the democratic space for citizen participation in public affairs, and creating platforms for informed public debate. In order to achieve that, BALADI CAP is assisting in the creation of the Human Rights Network, by bringing together different Civil Society Organizations from various fields, in addition to an Intermediary Support Organization (ISO), to tackle issues related to women, children, and drug users. On August 19, a Defining the Agenda workshop was held, which brought together fifteen representatives from seven organizations and resulted in the discussion of policy alternatives of the newly established network. The workshop is a key milestone under BALADI CAP s Civic Engagement Initiative (CEI) component. Network outcomes, as agreed upon, will become the criteria upon which advocacy grant applications from NGOs will be evaluated. Together with upcoming trainings on community mapping, topic discussion groups, stakeholder identification and proposal writing, this workshop will ensure that the Human Rights Network will be functioning according to a shared vision, mission, and objectives. In addition, advocacy grants implemented by NGO members of network will be coordinated and synchronized to achieve maximum impact during the project s lifetime. The Human Rights Network will provide a new model for Human Rights Advocacy in Lebanon, a model based on advocacy networking for results.

3 PAYROLL PREPARATION TRAINING-WORKSHOP Twenty-six participants from 15 different Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) attended the training Workshop focused on income tax and social security funds, rules and regulations under the Lebanese labor law Attendees gained the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding to manage and calculate payrolls within their organizations and maintain accurate and up-to-date records Attendees are now well-equipped and prepared to work with BALADI CAP to customize a payroll preparation policy for their respective organizations as well. A great workshop which I think attendees will profit significantly from, Alice Azar, Deputy Chief of Party / Senior Finance Specialist

4 M&E WORKSHOP ON RESULTS FRAMEWORK & LOGICAL FRAMEWORK Twenty-five participants from 13 different Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) attended the training Workshop focused on discussing the design of Logical Frameworks, Results Frameworks, and Monitoring & Evaluation Frameworks Attendees now have boosted skills and better identity inputs, activities, outputs, outcomes and impact within their project design and implementation

5 VISION AND MISSION WORKSHOPS BALADI CAP conducted a number of all-day training workshops aimed at helping local civil society organizations (CSOs) define their vision and mission and conduct a SWOT analysis as part of a strategic planning exercise. These workshops are part of a series of workshops designed to develop the strategic and action plans for CSOs, which will serve as a guide for their activities in the future. The vision and mission of a CSO act as its compass and constitute key elements of an organization s strategic planning. They guide every decision an organization makes and every action it takes. These statements will direct the activities of the CSO and communicate to its different stakeholders who they are and what they stand for. As staff and board members engage in the process, they become committed to measurable goals and approve priorities for implementation. Without a clear vision, a CSO will struggle to inspire others to join. Without a clear mission, it will lack focus and direction. BALADI CAP has already conducted such workshops with organizations including Jeunesse Contre la Drogue (JCD), Soins Infirmiers et Développement Communautaire (SIDC), Youth Network for Civic Activism (YNCA), Akkarouna NGO, and the Association for Forests, Development and Conservation (AFDC). BALADI CAP s Senior Organizational Development Specialist, Rania Skaine, during workshop visits at Soins Infirmiers et Développement Communautaire (left) and Akkarouna NGO (right)

6 BENCHMARK ASSESSMENT SESSIONS WITH LOCAL MUNICIPALITIES Under the Building Alliances for Local Advancement, Development and Investment Capacity Building (BALADI CAP) program, benchmark assessment sessions were conducted with the municipal boards of the towns of Chiyah and Jezzine. The sessions were facilitated by a team from the Center for Active Citizenship (CAC), a partner on the project, and in collaboration with Hussein Hallal, an expert in municipal organization and finance. Each session gathered 13 municipal board members and key staff members. Using the Municipal Capacity Assessment Tool (MCAT), developed by BALADI CAP s team along with the experts, participants evaluated their organizational, financial and communication practices, in addition to their readiness in case of emergency and their IT in a participatory and consultative approach. The Municipal Capacity Assessment Tool (MCAT) is designed to evaluate the current capacities of municipalities under BALADI CAP s Civic Engagement for Democratic Governance (CEDG) component through 37 indicators revolving around Municipal Administration, Municipal Finance and Financial Planning, IT, Public Outreach, in addition to Responsiveness and Disaster Management. The second part of the sessions allowed the participants to identify their priorities and the support needed from BALADI CAP over the next two years. Upon completion of each benchmark assessment, BALADI CAP and CAC teams are designing action plans for each municipality, highlighting the areas of technical capacity development based on identified priorities. The teams will continue, in parallel, to conduct the remaining 27 benchmark assessments in order to launch the CEDG trainings in early Martine Btaich, program coordinator for CEDG at the Center for Active Citizenship (CAC), during the benchmark assessment sessions with the municipalities of Jezzine (left) and Chiyah (right)

7 PARTNER PROFILE T.E.R.R.E LIBAN Founded in 1995, TERRE LIBAN continues to be one of the leading environmental awareness organizations in Lebanon and an active member of the Lebanese Eco-movement. TERRE LIBAN strives to raise awareness among Lebanese youth of the principles of public health and sustainable development, and to promote the importance of peace and to educate on how to preserve natural resources through singing lectures, training of trainers and practical projects. TERRE LIBAN promises to influence the Lebanese community, the private and the public sector, and the municipalities to adopt sustainable development principles and to help protect natural resources. Some of the issues that TERRE LIBAN is currently working on: Advocacy campaign to limit the spread of landfills Advocacy campaign to save the Baabda forest, which is home to 171 species of birds, 30 species of animals and 425 species of plants Advocacy campaign to ban chaotic construction of dams, specifically the one planned in Janneh Workshop with different municipalities to enhance best environmental practices Awareness campaign to educate communities about the negative effects of global warming

8 TEAM RETREAT BALADI CAP s staff visited the Al Shouf Cedar Reserve for an all-day team retreat, which was also attended by Management Systems International s Senior Rule of Law Advisor & BALADI CAP s Technical Director, Ms. Shelley Wieck, who is currently visiting from Washington. During the retreat, the team discussed ways to address various design & implementation challenges that would be further highlighted in specialized team meetings later. GET IN TOUCH There are multiple ways to get in touch with BALADI CAP. We would love to hear your feedback! T: / F: ext. 105 E: Webpage: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/baladi.cap Blog: Address: Victoire Bldg, 2 nd floor Sami El Soleh Street Beirut, Lebanon

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