Category Archives: Society

Here’s The Story Behind The Pie: Tamanna’s The Bad and The Brave

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If you’ve been wondering what’s the story behind the pie that’s been circulating around Beirut, it’s a teaser for the above movie that was done by Tammana. Here’s the full story:

Five year old cancer survivor Ghassan wanted to become an actor and pie someone in the face one day. Tammana which is an NGO that grants the wishes of children suffering from life threatening illnesses made Ghassan’s dream come true in this action-packed movie where he plays detective. I loved the initiative and I loved the kid’s acting skills!

Street Harassment: Walking in Beirut as a Woman

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This video is part of an academic project to show how women are harassed when walking in the streets of Beirut. I think it’s a good idea but that needs to be executed in a much better way. They should do something similar to the video “10 hours of walking as a woman in NYC” whereas we hear what people are actually saying about that women, not just someone repeating some cliché phrases (even though chou hal tiz mitil madfa3 el ingliz cracks me up everytime).

They should also walk in different parts of Lebanon, in Mar Mikhael, Ain el Mraisse, and somewhere in Tripoli maybe to see if there are different reactions.


LiveLoveBeirut & JoueClubLiban Launch The #WeLiveToLove Initiative : A Gift For Every Child In Need

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The LiveLoveBeirut guys have already figured out a way to make good use of my picture and help out children in need. They’ve launched the #welivelove campaign whereas every child in need that you find in the streets will get a Christmas gift from JoueClubLiban.

So go ahead, take pictures of children in need and make their Christmas a joyful one!

Since you’ve all been so moved by this picture, it was impossible not to take action. We’re teaming up with @joueclubliban and giving every child in need you find on the streets of Lebanon, every child you share with us on #welivetolove, a Christmas gift. Let’s make their day a little brighter. That’s step one, and we got more to come. Let’s start giving back together, and create a bit of change ✨ you’re a magical community guys. We love you. Picture taken by @lenajib

How Can We Bring This Kid Back To School?

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I took this picture yesterday of a small kid begging in the street and looking at a group of students coming out of Empire theater in Achrafieh and probably wishing he’s among them. I’ve spotted a lot of kids begging in this area and this picture pretty much sums up the struggle that they are going through.

Since a lot of people loved the picture (some told me it’s award winning which is quite flattering) and it’s being shared like crazy online, I was wondering if there’s anyway we could use it to help bring this kid back to school. We could maybe sell it in some online bid and donate the money or use it in an awareness campaign to help bring this kid and hopefully others back to school.

Let me know what you think.

Zalfa Will Answer All Your Questions On #Law293 That Protects Women From Family Violence

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Zalfa is a woman who lives in Lebanon and suffers, like many, from discrimination, violence and injustice. She’s here to help other victims understand the newly adopted Law 293 to protect women and other family members from family violence. Zalfa is an initiative from KAFA to inform women in Lebanon about their rights and legal choices while warning them against the legal loopholes that could hamper their full protection.

I think it’s very important for women to take legal action whenever they are abused for their sake and their children’s sake. I know it’s easier said than done and it takes a lot of courage specially in our society, but things are changing in the right direction and there are qualified NGOs and parties ready to assist every victim legally, financially and morally. We need more women to speak out and motivate others to do the same in order to spread further awareness and adopt a stricter law hopefully soon.

You can check out Zalfa’s Questions and Answers [Here]. LBCI News is also showing daily hints and tips from Zalfa as you can see below.


Lebanon Among The Ten Worst Countries For Women

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Lebanon was ranked among the ten worst countries for women in the world and scored one of the lowest rates in terms of women political empowerment with less than 3% (Yemen, Oman, Qatar and Brunei Darussalam are the only countries with less than 3%). The original report was produced by The WEF’s 2014 Global Gender Gap Report which measured disparities between men and women in 142 countries. In the worst-scoring nations, economic and educational opportunities, as well as political representation and health outcomes, were far worse for women than for men.

Here’s what the article said about Lebanon:

Few nations were rated worse than Lebanon for women’s political empowerment. Just 3% of seats in Lebanon’s parliament were held by women, one of the absolute lowest rates. Further, none of the country’s ministerial positions were occupied by women. One problem for many women in the country may be that religious laws cover issues of personal status, such as marriage and divorce. Despite passing a new anti-domestic violence law in April 2014, Human Rights Watch said the country still has significant room for improvement. In particular, the organization said that “Exempting matters governed by personal status laws from the domestic violence law undermines women’s security in the home.”

8. Lebanon
> Female-to-male income ratio: 0.27 (7th worst)
> Labor force participation (m/f): 76% / 26%
> Literacy rate (m/f): 93% / 86%
> Pct. women in parliament: 3%

I know women face a long battle for equality in this country and drastic changes need to be introduced, but the percentage of women in parliament is not a very significant ratio to look at right now as the whole country is paralyzed and we haven’t had elections in 4 years or more. I can’t believe we are ranked worse than KSA!

You can check out the full report [Here].

ABAAD Campaign For The International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

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ABAAD is a Lebanese NGO aimed at achieving gender equality as an essential condition to sustainable social and economic development in the MENA region. Their slogan for this year is “Through violence … Nobody comes out ahead. The ultimate responsibility is putting an end to violence against women” and is being endorsed by President Michel Sleiman.

Unfortunately crimes against women and girls in Lebanon are still happening and the latest victim was Nisrine Rouhana, who was kidnapped, tortured, shot dead and then thrown in the Nahr Ibrahim river by her husband.

There are no excuses for a man to hit his wife or daughter. Any man who does that is a coward, not a real man.

bil 3enef

Gulf Agrees New Contract For Domestic Workers While Lebanon Refuses To Change Its Archaic Kafala System

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Domestic workers in the Gulf will be entitled to end of service indemnity and overtime pay for extra work. Employers won’t be allowed to confiscate their passports or documents, or forbid them from leaving the house. The new contracts also limits the working day to eight hours. Of course this is not the ideal contract yet, but it’s a major improvement from the previous one and the one we have in Lebanon.

It’s sad how we always brag about being a democratic country that respects human rights, yet we haven’t been able to change this pro-slavery Kafala system.

Read the full article [Here].

Gulf labour ministers have agreed on minimum terms to improve the contracts of more than two million domestic staff working in the region, a top official was quoted as saying on Tuesday.
The move comes as labour ministers of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are to meet with their Asian counterparts in Kuwait this week to discuss the issue.
The new contract entitles domestic workers to a weekly day off, annual leave and the right to live outside their employer’s house, the director general of Kuwait’s Public Manpower Authority, Jamal Al Dossari, told AFP.

Thanks Mustapha!

Haifa Wehbe’s Dress in Star Academy

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I don’t like Haifa but she can do whatever she wants and wear any dress she likes. Those who don’t like such dresses can switch to Tiji or the Disney channel. Claiming that Haifa crossed the line and disrespected women by wearing a sexy dress is pure ignorance. I wish Arabs (men and women) would react the same way to daily violations and malpractices against Arab women instead of focusing on Haifa’s ass (It looks better than Kim’s ass that’s for sure).

Moreover and like Dana said, I’ve seen girls wearing similar and even more provocative dresses at night clubs in Beirut and their pictures showing in magazines yet no one complained about it.

Dana Khairallah, a Lebanese lifestyle blogger, says that people kicked up a fuss about this outfit because of an ongoing struggle within Arab culture. “They think if women dress this way it would misrepresent our culture,” she says. “I find that hypocritical. I see Arab girls dressing more provocatively in clubs but no one cares because there are no cameras.”

“There’s also an element of social media meanness in what is happening that drives this bullying of celebrities.” she adds.


Haifa Wehbe

Books not Boots: UK Embassy Donates $50 Million To Public Schools and Educational Projects In Lebanon

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Tom Fletcher

Public schools in Lebanon can accommodate up to 300,000 students and there are 275,000 students expected to enroll in the 2014-2015 academic year. The remaining 25,000 are usually allocated to refugees however there are 400,000 Syrian refugees wishing to enroll in public schools next year, which means that the majority of Syrian children in Lebanon will be left out of school and with no education.

In order to help us cope with this catastrophic situation, British Ambassador Tom Fletcher announced during a tour of one of the public schools in Beirut’s suburbs that the UK is donating almost $50 million dollars for schools and related projects in Lebanon. This will help over 400 public schools accept further Syrian students and will allow every child in Lebanon to have a set of textbooks.

Education is the strongest weapon against terrorism and extremism and it is our responsibility to help out these vulnerable Syrian students.

kid This young Syrian boy never went to school. He fled his country when he was four, and enrolled in school in Lebanon as a kindergarten student last year. This year, he was not allowed to enroll in school. Even though he can’t read or write, while the rest of the children were drawing the cliché smiling suns and square houses, he chose to redraw words he saw on the walls around him. He drew from right to left, like Arabic, but it was the months of the year in English. Picture by Gino