Category Archives: Society

Who Really Killed Celine Rakan?

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girl via Naharnet

I don’t want to accuse anyone of anything but the story is fishy from the start and the police should have conducted a more thorough investigation. It doesn’t make sense that the housekeeper killed the girl because she caught her stealing since we are talking about a 4 year old here. Moreover, the whole security camera blackout story doesn’t add up as well and I don’t understand why the parents decided to go on TV and talk about this, specially after falsely accusing a doctor at first.

Why would anyone want to go on TV few days after the death of their only child and talk about it and explain what happened? Why would I share a video showing my dead kid and let it go viral on all social media channels?

Out of respect for the child, I didn’t want to share the video but I still believe a proper investigation should be conducted.

24 Syrian Babies Are Born Every Day In Lebanon

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31,000 Syrian babies were born between March 2011 and September 2014 in Lebanon according to this report. This is yet another alarming number for the Lebanese authorities and the Syrian refugees as well. However, it’s never too late to start building proper refugee camps and setting proper guidelines and launching awareness campaigns for all the refugees.

One Of The Lebanese Kidnapped Army Soldiers Met With His Family

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What these families are going through is unbearable and unacceptable. From one side, the government is barely doing anything to free the soldiers and from another side the terrorists are giving the families false hopes and leaving them anxious and fearful regarding the future fate of their sons.

29 soldiers have been kidnapped for over a month now by al-Nusra Front and ISIS in Ersal.

[YouTube]

The First School For The Deaf In Lebanon

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[YouTube]

IRAP is one of the very few associations I respect and support in Lebanon. They’ve been working hard to help rehabilitate audio-phonetics and they produce high-end products that encourage people to buy and aid them. Their cookies are available in almost any supermarket and are really good.

They need to work on their website and Facebook page though, as both pages will help them spread their message.

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11 Signs You Were Raised by an Arab Mom

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I would add the following points to Barakbits’s post:

12- You were not allowed to sleep over at your friends because they are strangers.
13- Your friends’ parents know all about your childhood’s most embarrassing stories because of your mom.
14- If a girl ever shows up to your house and your mom likes her, she’s the one.
15- You are reminded to go visit your teta all the time.

Of course there are plenty of other signs but those are the ones I thought of now. Maybe I should come up with a post related to Lebanese moms only.

Check out the original post [Here].

1) “Wainek?” Instead of “Hi, how are you?” as an opening line on the phone.

2) Being called “Mama” as a term of endearment, instead of “honey” or “sweetheart”. “No ya Mama you cannot go out tonight, we are having Ma’loobeh.”

3) You are very hospitable because you know that if you weren’t your mom would scold you later on.

4) Family comes first, and you probably lived at home until you got married (or still live at home if you’re not married or studying abroad).

128 Tomatoes To Say #NoToExtension (#لا_للتمديد)

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128 tomatoes were sent this year to the 128 representatives of the people, with a sticker reading “No to extension”, and a demonstration is planned tomorrow starting from the Ministry of Interior in Sanayeh till Riad al Solh square to reject the extension of the Parliament. This is the second extension to the current members’ mandate after last year’s extension in November.

Needless to say, I am totally against any extension and I believe whomever is blocking presidential elections or any elections for that sake in Lebanon is committing a huge mistake.

A Lonely End To The Only the Lonely Project

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[YouTube]

Damaged and replaced stand buttons: 38
Damaged and replaced stand cameras: 19
Damaged and replaced stands: 6

I guess this pretty much sums up this social experiment conducted by Volvo. It’s a very disappointing but expected outcome.

Funnily enough, the trend in Lebanon lately is to report cars or motorcycles breaking the law but it looks like people just like to take pictures and share them on FB and Twitter (and then go break the law somewhere else).

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Meet Ajialouna: A Charitable, Social, Healthcare, Educational And Cultural Organization In Beirut

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The first time I heard about Ajialouna was when they launched with ABC Verdun the Ramadan Festival few weeks ago, and when ABC donated over 10,000 pieces samples of clothes to Ajialouna to distribute them to families during Eid. Since I wasn’t able to make it to the event in Verdun, I thought I pay Ajialouna a visit and see what they do, specially after reading that it’s been around for 20 years now, and that it’s not only a charity organisation, but also offers public, medical, educational and health services for orphans, widows, underprivileged families and individuals.

I headed to Ajialouna’s head office in Tallet Khayyat and met with their marketing manager Zeina, who briefed me a bit on the organization’s history and introduced me to the staff before showing me around. We started the tour at the ground floor where needy families come to shop for clothes (for free) and get food supplies to satisfy their daily needs.

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The clothes are all brand new and are donated all year long by different companies and clothing stores. As for the food, they prepare on a daily basis grocery bags for hundreds of families that include cans, frozen goods, ingredients for a Fattoush salad, meat and chicken and desserts as well. Unlike the clothes, Ajialouna buys most of the food and distribute them for free of course.

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Aside from food and clothes, Ajialouna also provides social, educational and medical help for all families. Any family can apply for help, as long as they register and fill in all the needed information. Before the final approval, Ajialouna’s social committee will study the application and visit the household of the applicant to decide on the authenticity of the case and the budget needed to assist. Once approved, Ajialouna will try to find a sponsor for the applicant. Ajialouna currently has over 825 sponsors in Beirut and 16 in Tripoli where their second office is located.

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In addition to the social support, Ajialouna has a women empowerment program that provides basic education and training for underprivileged women. It’s also a free program that is aimed at empowering women in the Lebanese society and giving them the opportunity to acquire a job in different fields, such as cooking, hair dressing, makeup etc …

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More than 100 women have already graduated ever since the program was launched in 2010, and I met some of them who work in the kitchen and the atelier, which are both located within the Ajialouna building. The products from the Atelier are all high quality ones and sold at a permanent exhibition at Ajialouna and several exhibitions in and outside Lebanon like the Garden Show Festival. As for the kitchen which is run by 25 needy women and widows, they cover all the catering requests all week long and I’ve tasted some of the stuff they prepare and it’s really good.

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Last but not least, Ajialouna has a whole floor dedicated to health care. It’s technically a medical center equipped with the latest medical equipment and clinics, and operated by some of the best doctors in Beirut, and everything is free of charge. There’s even a small gym and a physiotherapy room, as well as a pharmacy that distributes meds for free. Added to that, Ajialouna has a program called Life Petals aimed at helping children with cancer.

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They’ve also started back in 2004 a great initiative aimed at helping the elderly, and assist them in covering the outstanding fees surgery and treatment beyond the coverage of the Ministry of Public Health. This is really important as a lot of needy families struggle to cover the expenses of their sick parents sometimes and the normal insurance only covers up to a certain age.

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I am sure I’ve missed a lot of services and programs that Ajialouna offers, but I have to say I was really blown away by the services provided by this non-profit organization, and by how structured and organized they are. They have a food shop and clothing store, they have clinics, a gym, their own kitchen and atelier, and they train and employ needy women all based on donations and sponsors. They even provide free medical examinations to over 200 public schools in Beirut and treat the students that have medical issues in collaboration with the Ministry of Health.

The work they’re pulling is quite amazing and it feels great to know about such non-profit organizations in Lebanon. If you wish to know more about Ajialouna, check out their facebook page [Here] and their website [Here].