On June 7, 2009, Lebanon held parliamentary elections that garnered world-wide attention. Most of the interest has focused on the weight and influence of external powers and the balance-of-power in the region. We at Safadi Foundation USA would like to highlight the growing influence of civil society and the significance these elections represent for the continuation of reforms that will help in creating a democratic, sovereign, and independent Lebanon. Civil society is an integral part of the reform process and critical to the stability of any democratic country.
Lebanon has a vibrant civil society that is involved in all facets of life and development sectors. Safadi Foundation USA would like to introduce you to a new blog that aims to be a portal for information about civil society in Lebanon. Developing Lebanon (http://blog.safadifoundationusa.org) is designed with the grassroots in mind and will be a way for civil society organizers to connect with each other and to share best practices, success stories, and lessons learned. Coordinating reform efforts will enhance the success of programs and help civil society organizations benefit from other organizations’ strengths and expertise. This blog aims to be a civil society clearinghouse of news, events, and case studies.
Each week Developing Lebanon will spotlight civil society organizations, highlighting their programs and successes. We will conduct interviews with civil society leaders, government officials, and Lebanese citizens on their thoughts and ideas about how to move Lebanon forward in the reform process. The blog will also contain a weekly sector segment focusing on reform efforts in a particular sector, including business, environment, and education, among others. Information about US policy towards Lebanon and Washington-based think tanks that have Lebanon programs will also be routinely included.
In the blog’s sidebar, you will find a list of civil society organizations in Lebanon and across the globe linking to each organization’s website. This list aims to be inclusive and will grow as we discover more organizations working to help overcome Lebanon’s development challenges.
We look forward to your active participation in this effort. Please contact Cathie Glover at firstname.lastname@example.org for any feedback and or suggestions. In addition, please subscribe to our blog, sign up for our Twitter feeds @SafadiUSA, and visit our website at http://www.safadifoundationusa.org for more information on our efforts to build a sustainable future for all Lebanese.