The British Council has won a contract to deliver a project to promote gender equality and empowerment amongst women living in Lebanon.
The project, Direct Action for Women: Reform, Inclusion and Confidence (DAWRIC), commenced on 16 September 2016 and will last for 24 months. It is valued at just under €1m and largely funded by the Delegation of the European Union.
Promoting better gender equality and empowering women are priority issues for the government of Lebanon. The issue as a whole is recognised as a cross-cutting theme to be addressed in all future projects across the country. DAWRIC is therefore specifically designed to promote gender equality at a national level.
The overall objective of DAWRIC is to build the capacity of women in Lebanon and provide support to actively involve them in public life, in order to combat poverty and ensure greater equality in both political life and decision-making processes.
In coordination with local municipalities and civil society organisations, DAWRIC proposes to address the need for increased skills building and knowledge sharing amongst women. For example, to increase participation in decision-making processes, the project will take steps to establish gender equality committees and to ensure that more women have acquired the skills, knowledge and confidence to allow them to run for elections.
There is also a need in Lebanon to build long-term, community-based support to further encourage women’s political participation and increase their input into local authority strategies. It is expected that DAWRIC will contribute towards this ambition.
Promoting greater understanding amongst the general public of the dangers linked to discrimination and stereotypical representations of women in the media is also a priority. Therefore, DAWRIC will launch evidence-based advocacy campaigns and also build the capacity of journalists to raise awareness of such dangers.
A further expected outcome of the project is the building of a support infrastructure for women formed by skilled organisations that are better able to advance women’s rights through increased participation in public life.