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Tool-Kit Committees

20061215_lebanon_jpf_wg_zautar_el_gharbi_2 JEN established “Tool-Kit Committees” in villages in the Southern Lebanon. 

The Committees are in charge of managing a set of construction tools that JEN distributed beforehand to each community.  Each Committee uses its initiative to organize community-based tool lending.  Thanks to their original ideas, JEN’s assistance projects have been widely disseminated to local people in need.

Many Committees advertise tool lending over a loudspeaker of the minaret of the mosque in the centre of their village.  The minaret is a tall tower from which people are called to pray.  The call attracts people’s attention much more effectively than written notices JEN distributed around, as not all people are literate in villages in the South.20061220_lebanon_jpf_distribution_maarou_2

In one village, a municipal worker is involved in the Committee.  He is in charge of housing subsidies and informs those who frequently receive the allowance about tool lending.  In another village, the Committee cooperates with a local construction company.  The company promotes a discount campaign for reconstruction tied up with the Committee’s lending.

January 25, 2007 in Lebanon |


Use of Tools

20070111_lebanon_jpf_monitoring_zaoutar__6  JEN distributed reconstruction kits and tools in the village of Zaoutar el Ghabiye in December. We monitored the use of tools on the 11 January. 

Here is a feedback from Mohammed in the village:

“I came back to my village after the war from exile and found out my house completely knocked down and baring the whole floors without any walls.  I heard about JEN’s tool-kit project from the municipal government and at billboards at shops.  I borrowed a wheelbarrow, a shovel, a broom, a hammer, a pickaxe, and a saw in order to remove debris and reconstruct the destroyed house.  I do it all by myself for I cannot pay a carpenter.  All the kits are extremely useful, they are all I need and cannot afford to buy.”

January 18, 2007 in Lebanon |


Lebanese Recipes

Cimg0589_2 Lebanese people eat soft flat bread around 30 cm big (see the picture).  It is rounded and thinner than Indian Nan that it looks like. 

Here are two typical recipes:

*Manou’shi: traditional style baked with olive oil and thyme.  Olive oil and thyme are very popular in Lebanon like in other Mediterranean countries.  Japanese staffs are enjoying the foreign taste familiar in small villages in the South of Lebanon. 

*Labneh: crisped and served with olive oil and sour cream, as popular as Manou’shi.  The exotic mixture of crisp and sour cream excites Japanese staffs gain. 

In winter, people in villages bake it on a hot stove at home.

January 11, 2007 in Lebanon |


Witness to the Bombardment (no.3)

20061218_lebanon_jpf_distribution_jabal__4 Here is a witness of Mr. Josef Bakarat, a municipal worker of the village of Jbal el Botom in a mountainous region in the Southern Lebanon.  He is a member of a tool-kit committee that JEN established in the village on the 18 December:

JEN distributed reconstruction tools and kits to people of Jbal el Botom in the hope that the kits would help reconstruction of safe livelihoods.20061218_lebanon_jpf_distribution_jabal__5


“I remained in my village as a member of the municipal medical rescue team, while my family evacuated to Beirut.  Bombings were targeting on tall buildings in daylight.  Our team had a sleep in woods in the daytime and rescued the wounded at nighttimes.  The Israeli army targeted also on cars, blocked thoroughfares, and stopped the transport of water, food, as well as petrol to the village.  Our team had to transfer on foot a gravely wounded on a stretcher to a 20km-away hospital.  In the meantime, my house was bombarded directly.  I need to reconstruct it completely – a bomb left a huge hole from the roof to the ground.  I am waiting for official housing subsidies while staying at a small flat in a neighbouring village.  My one-year-old baby is still afraid of roaring noise of airplanes.”

January 4, 2007 in Lebanon |