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Working on Lebanese- Lebanese Relations in West Bekaa

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In West Bekaa, one of the most affected regions hosting the highest number of Syrian displaced, the UNDP "Peace Building in Lebanon" project created local peace-building committees. These committees support Lebanese-Lebanese social stability by reducing tensions between the Lebanese citizens themselves and between the Lebanese and the Syrians.

After the implementation of a participatory conflict analysis and a capacity-building program entitled "Crisis Management" in 2014, a reference group of local actors representing the seven participating municipalities of Jab Janine, Machghara, Al-Qaraoun, Ghaza, Al-Mansoura, Hawch El-Harime, and Al-Marj was formed to promote social stability between the Syrian and the Lebanese and the Lebanese citizens themselves.

From the 2nd till the 5th of December 2014, the project discussed the problems highlighted during the previous phases in separate meetings held with the above-mentioned municipalities. Possible solutions and suggestions were discussed, such as finding solutions to the sewage networks, to the waste collection, etc.

"When we work on finding solutions to the conflicts, we stop creating them in the first place", said Mr. Fadi Abi Allam, the consultant working with the UNDP on this project. He added that this project is giving voice to people to talk openly about their problems, share experiences, and find the most suitable ways to solve them.

"We are trying to build a culture of tolerance instead of a culture of hate", he said.

The project adopted a participatory approach for the process since the beginning until the planning for sustainable peace-building mechanisms adapted to their reality.