Empowering for dignity: best practices of community WASH committees in North Lebanon

2018-02-12T15:10:50Z (GMT) by Nur Arab M. Hilal Leland Montell
Since March 2011, the Syrian crisis has displaced nine million individuals with an estimated 1.5 million in Lebanon. The government of Lebanon has consistently resisted the establishment of formal refugee camps, so the refugee population is widely dispersed. As a result, WASH sector assistance has been highly individualized, providing services to small scale settlements. With mostly impermanent infrastructure, maintenance and aid dependency have become primary concerns. Now that humanitarian funding is in decline, and no end in sight to the conflict in Syria, the current situation is not sustainable. In an effort to provide a measure of stability into a future of declining humanitarian support, SOLIDARITES INTERNATIONAL (SI) has initiated community WASH committees intended to promote ownership and restore dignity. Based on a stepped mobilisation methodology, the committees have generated results far beyond their projected scope. This paper outlines the main steps of a positive shift from service-providing to fully community-driven initiatives.