UNDP Programme/Portfolio: CPR and Peacebuilding
Geographic Coverage: Lebanon
Project Status: Ongoing
Start Date: 01 January 2014
Expected End Date: 31 December 2021
Implementing Agency: UNDP (Direct Execution) (UNDP)
The UNDP Peace Building Project aimed to address the underlying causes of conflict in Lebanon and sought to create “safe spaces” for local identity groups to discuss their concerns openly and enhance mutual understanding of the different “other”. Social cohesion was enhanced at the local, community and national levels between civil society (youth, educators, media, NGOs and religious leaders) and relevant local public (municipal council members and mukhtars) actors. Through training programs, advocacy work and enhanced networking, stakeholders were better equipped to actively and harmoniously contribute to peace building, community dialogue and ensure a more effective bottom-up impact of efforts. Building on these initiatives, the second phase of the project (2011-2013), Strengthening Civil Peace in Lebanon, focused on strengthening dialogue, trust- and consensus building, enhancing and nurturing partnerships between civil society and local government actors. During the second phase, focus was directed towards strengthening initiatives that promote collective memory and integrate peace building concepts into formal and non-formal educational channels. Moreover, the project tackled media (traditional and alternative) to manage diversity and decrease biased reporting. At the local level, the project focused on developing local level peace strategies in three conflict prone areas of Lebanon with a special focus on youth engagement. Finally, a cross-political, multi-confessional civil society platform addressing civil peace was created and supported. With the Syrian crisis further impacting the Lebanese context, the project acted as a focal point to many partner organizations on issues pertaining to the impact of the Syrian crisis impact on social cohesion in Lebanon, both in terms of inter Lebanese relations and Lebanese Syrian interaction.
Building on the understanding and successes of the previous two phases, the third phase of the project (2014-2015) will focus on addressing the new challenges to civil peace and peace building in the country posed by the Syrian crisis. Therefore, the focus will be on four outputs: 1. Education promoting social cohesion supported; 2. Media empowered to promote balanced and conflict sensitive media coverage; 3. Local level peace building strategies to mitigate tensions developed in selected conflict prone areas of Lebanon hosting Syrian refugees; 4. An NGO platform promoting nation-wide truth and reconciliation supported ex-fighters’ role in promoting peace building supported.
Achievements & Expected Results
Achievements & Expected Resutls
Output 1: Education promoting social cohesion supported
Output 2: Media empowered to promote balanced and conflict sensitive media coverage
Output 3: Local level peace building strategies to mitigate tensions will be developed in selected conflict prone areas of Lebanon hosting Syrian refugees
Output 4: An NGO platform promoting nation-wide truth and reconciliation and ex-fighters’ role in promoting peace building will be supported.
Issues & Difficulties
- Limited funding for the more “Lebanese” peace building related activities of the project, and those dealing with root causes of conflicts in Lebanon - Official and direct buy- in of the Ministry of Education for the work under peace education
- Funding is in most cases secured for short term basis which affects both the internal management of the project and the activities and their impact