3- Experiences through the “Mouvement Social”

Experiences of: Mrs katia kartenian ,Mrs Roula Haidar ,Mrs Amal Moukarzel,Mrs Leila Jaber

Last update: 24 April 2024


Reference of Social Work In The Face of Crises and Disasters Booklets – Part Two

Researcher – Hiam Samaha Kahi
Research Assistant – Aimee Ghanem

The experience of the “Mouvement Social” preceded the Lebanese war, as it was founded in 1961, yet it responded to the call of relief work at the beginning of the war through the social workers and volunteers who worked there and adhered to its principles. It is worth mentioning that the experiences mentioned by the interviewed social workers took place in various Lebanese regions: the north and south of Lebanon, Beirut, Hermel, Nabatiyeh and the Bekaa. Evidently, the aforementioned social workers made the instant relief work a springboard for multiple development works.

Then came the initiative of launching several well-equipped modern sewing workshops meant for widowed women in Tripoli in order to work with women and train them, not only on sewing techniques but also on financial management and productivity to bring them to a stage of independence, with Mrs. Katia Kartenian.

The project of working with “delinquent juveniles”, deprived of pursuing their studies by the war years, played a significant and prominent role in various centres of the “Mouvement Social” through rehabilitation, providing vocational training, and creating job opportunities, aiming to keep them away from the risks of juvenile delinquency and to create for them the spirit of citizenship, with Mrs. Roula Haidar.

Moreover, highlighting the importance of developing handicrafts and training people involved in their production and marketing led to the establishment of the “Lebanese Artisan” in 1979, with Mrs. Amal Moukarzel.

Social workers have also played a leading role in many other programmes in the field of health, medicines, rural and community development, vocational training, working with juveniles in prisons and school re- enrollment programmes, as well as, between 1984 and 1989, the “Training Centre for Social and Educational Work in Mechref” that was established and supervised by a social worker, Mrs. Leila Jaber.

According to many of those we interviewed, we cannot ignore the essential positive roles and impacts of the “Mouvement Social” on social work and health.

Perhaps the most significant concern of its founder, Father Grégoire Haddad, was networking and coordination.

It is worth reminding here the letter sent by Father Grégoire Haddad (1988) to social workers during the 1975 war, warning of the danger of slipping, through relief work, into the labyrinths of dependence and submission and making Lebanon a country of associations and charitable organizations. If we read it today, we would see how it conforms with the current conditions.