Archive for July, 2014

a great article I stumbled upon in Al Akhbar, related to Social pressures on single women , the age crisis, the stereotypes of women …

bref, I liked it!

enjoy reading it if you have time this summer 🙂

Rita Chemaly


Lebanon: “Misses” Don’t Miss Much


The idea of cohabitation is still widely frowned upon in Lebanese society. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah)

By: Nisrine Hammoud

Published Thursday, March 29, 2012

Social pressures on single women fail to acknowledge their economic independence, educational, and professional achievements, or the fact that “late marriage” is the statistical norm.

Her scattered grey hairs seem to render the trick of hiding them beneath colored hair useless. Her eyes have lost their former glow. Her facial lines are “under control” thanks to cosmetics whose container “annoys” her, as it suggests her age. Her stomach is slightly rounded. The fat refuses to burn. She gestures to the bed she has slept in for years to justify her habitually bad mood. Her “disengagement” with her body is evident in her purchase of things that she does not need, her growing intrusiveness, and her interest in details. She is also a chronic workaholic.

The rapid passage of time makes the accomplishments of her 30-plus years seem unwelcome. Neither a postgraduate degree, promotion in her career, nor financial independence diminish her haunting sense that something is “missing.”

Even when she knows that is illogical, her society, which boasts about how it defends its values, does not. It still refuses to accept the consequences of its new reality.

The fact is that the average age of marriage in Lebanon is 30 for females and 35 for males, according to surveys conducted by the organization Information International in the last three years.

Much has been written about the reasons behind late marriage. These include low wages, costly housing, the effects of emigration on both sexes, the marriage of males to foreign spouses, and lifestyle expectations caused by consumerism. Women’s educational attainment, freedom from male economic control, and career ambitions are also contributing factors.

There were about 4,850,000 officially registered Lebanese citizens by the end of 2011, of whom 49.9 percent were males and 50.1 percent females. Information International’s Muhammad Shamseddin explains that emigration – which continues to drain the population at a rate of 30,000-35,000 per annum – distorts the gender balance because about 70 percent of emigrants are male. The end result is a male-female ratio of 44-56 among the roughly 3,750,000 registered citizens who live in Lebanon.

Conforming to Stereotype

But the above factors and figures relate only to the institution of marriage. There are no statistics on cohabitation, which remains largely frowned upon by society and illegal in the personal status law.

“The constant struggle between the stereotype and the transformed reality creates a prevalent logic of deception in society,” remarks anthropologist Maha Kayyal. She describes the result as a society that is “shackled by cultural inheritance.”

One feature of this “deception” is that women must satisfy their sexual needs in a deceptive manner that enables them to conform to the stereotype when later entering the institution of marriage, even when their own convictions are at odds with it.

Kayyal says this categorizes Lebanon as what anthropologists describe as a “cold” society, one that retains a mythic code of thinking, and which is slow to adapt culturally to social change.

Lure of Motherhood

When “Eve” discusses her life, she hides behind a pseudonym in order to be able to disclose her inner thoughts, though it is her society that is laid bare by the distress in her words.

She knows that living alone imposes restrictions on social interaction which, because of the stereotype, do not encumber the married. It also increases the nagging of mothers and aunts.

Yasmine, a 32-year-old college professor, is not ready to venture into a “compromise” marriage with “whoever” in order to fulfill her dream of having children. But that does not mean she has no “deadline,” after which she might be.

“At 28, I believed I needed to get married so I could coordinate my future baby’s age with mine. But I didn’t find the right person to start a life with, after wasting several years in a relationship that ended in failure. However, my understanding of this ‘sacrament’ has changed since then,” says Yasmine.

Previously, she explains, she wanted to marry for love, “but today, I look for things in common with the other person that could make for a shared life.”

Yasmine has a post-graduate education, a good income and career, and has lived with a “fair” measure of freedom. She has avoided full sexual relations, because they “place family, upbringing, and honor on the line.” As she sees it, “if a young Lebanese man ‘concedes’ and accepts to marry a woman who is not a virgin, he will hold that ‘humiliation’ against her. This forces women to satisfy ‘forbidden’ needs in deceptive ways.”

Yasmine divides the men that she meets into three categories:

“The first is of a suitable age and has a low salary. He is not domineering, because income is important, which is essential for your relationship, without him being dependent of course,” she muses.

“The second is like you. He was late to marry, traveled abroad, and experienced life. He finds your type tempting because society would applaud his choice. But he cannot abide your views, and represents the precise opposite,” she says, adding, “As for the third category, he does not have a future plan. He lives for each day, without promising you marriage.”

She points out that even subconsciously, women will tend to “classify” men in accordance with the standards of the society in which they live, even if they disagree with them. Sadly, men who both she and her society would consider suitable “are not readily available.”

What about the “deadline” after which a compromise marriage might have to do? “If the situation remains the same at 35, I may lower my expectations, which I still see as logical, in order to see my tummy big.”

For 35-year-old college professor Suad, the big tummy “lure” is not worth the compromises. She speaks contentedly of the goals she has set for her life, which revolve around her career and make no provision for motherhood. “I don’t object to it, but as it doesn’t depend on me alone, it will have to involve a change of plans.”

She does not consider herself to have left marriage too late. “With an upbringing that links the age of marriage with the date of university graduation, and places love in the forbidden category, I had a late experience of a real relationship, and it only happened through friendship. That too is in defiance of traditions,” she says.

“But when I am in my work environment, I do not notice it. My social status annoys me only when I visit the village, and see the men who had asked for my hand in marriage – that I refused for various reasons – with their children, or when I find out that my mother has arranged a meeting in order to have me with someone [new].”

She continues: “I do not conceal that I fear this institution. But, in return, I cannot satisfy my physical needs through a relationship outside it, because if I do, society will not do me justice. So constant work is a definite compensation.”

The abundance of unsuitable marriage offers Suad has received lately does not help reduce the fear that shackles her, and extends to the idea of loneliness in old age, which also haunts her.

“Marriage Rehearsal”

Breaking the taboo with liberal forms of relationships carries high costs.

Thus, cohabitation, according to 42-year-old broadcaster Ward, is not an alternative to marriage, but a “rehearsal” for it. Even though it satisfies her physical, and some of her psychological, needs, it does not give her stability.

But marriage might not achieve stability either and is more damaging to break than the former relationship – though separation is hard in both cases, she says.

In Lebanon, “the confidential nature of cohabitation drives a woman to feel that she is living with a man who might leave her at any moment, whereas marriage fulfills a social status. Whatever the intellectual, social or professional level of a married couple may be, when they hold hands and enter a society, they are regarded with greater respect than a single man or woman who may have achieved a lot.”

Reaching married status remains an acclaimed accomplishment in a society that has not allowed the economic emancipation achieved by women to spread to other forms of relationships, she says.

However she concedes that “I hide my age in light of the popular idea that links aging to decreased fertility, without losing sight that an unmarried older woman is jealous of younger women who are generally more attractive to men.”

Yet as someone who is aware of her imperfections, she speaks of “the obstacles to having a ‘legitimate’ relationship, the phobia of being cheated on, the details one thinks of, the subconscious image of the authoritarian father and the voluntarily submissive mother…I am not wise enough to overlook the errors and mistakes of my partner, but I am not so stupid as not to notice them. This makes it harder to make the baby that I dream of. I don’t want it to be a gateway to self-deceit.”

Age Crisis

For her part, Salma, a 49-year-old artist, is unsure whether the unfamiliar flashes of rage and distress she has experienced since reaching menopause are due to her never having had children or are the residues of a failed romance. “I regret not getting married because I have always wanted children. What compensates for that even though I did not get married, is that I have experienced passion at its finest, when one may spend a lifetime without achieving that.”

She charts her life as follows: “At 30, I experienced an ‘age crisis.’ I had not obtained my higher diploma or started a family or achieved anything noteworthy. I always blamed myself for not being unable to complete anything. I went through a tough period, which was only eased through a relationship that did not develop into marriage, even after all the compromises that I made. As a result, I decided to make up for lost time, such as by buying a house and succeeding academically and professionally. After that my satisfaction at accomplishing my goals got rid of the insomnia that I had suffered from as a result of not being married.”

She continues: “I believe that with declining sexual energy and with the possibility of having children having since passed, I live peacefully today. I do what I please, keeping up with art and exhibitions, which I could not do earlier due to the pressures of life, such as my father’s death and then my mother’s sickness and death. It’s like a period of early retirement.”

Salma admits that it took her a long time to understand that the perfect person cannot create the perfect relationship. The latter is just an illusion associated with stereotypes created by the media and consumer advertising. What she had sought in marriage turned out to be a “fantasy.”

She concludes by saying: “The aura around the ‘love game’ disappears when you take a step back to look at it. Then, you realize that what you like about the other person, even if the chance of finding it falls to 1 percent, is not related to his accomplishments but to the way he sees things. If it turns out to be clear, the details can be worked out in a tranquil setting.”

This article is an edited translation from the Arabic Edition.

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Women reproductive roles are entrenched in our society.

Even women reproduce the same roles making it difficult to change our gender social –predetermined roles.

I am now a mother, I have to be the one who takes care of the child, who bathes him, who changes him, who feeds him. Me= Mother= care taker= women role .

I was super glad to see the advertisement of a dad giving a bottle to his child. In Lebanon, dad’s are seen are the ones who work outside the house and just get the cash flow.

You are newly married women in Lebanon : you will open your house “fetha bayta” and will have to know how to cook, clean, and take care of the “household”.

In my opinion empowering women is to let women be aware of the fact that the roles they have are “socially” determined and therefore they can change them and shake them.

Below is the illustration of how gender roles and characteritics are predetermined , below the stereotypes appear clearly!

Rita Chemaly


gender social  roles


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Terms of Reference

 Data Analyst Expert

National Commission for Lebanese Women & UNFPA Lebanon

Project: LBN3U705

Duty Station: Beirut, Lebanon

Reports to: National Director (NCLW)

Duration of Employment: 4 months (August  1- November  30, 2014) 

  1. Background

Since 2006, the National Commission for Lebanese Women (NCLW) has been collaborating with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) towards mainstreaming gender aspects in various development platforms, policies, and strategies. In 2012, this collaboration led to the development, consensus and launching of the National Strategy for Women in Lebanon.  The strategy spells out 12 priority objectives identified as essential ones for ensuring that gender equality dimensions are adequately mainstreamed in the social, cultural, economical, and political spheres.  In order to translate this strategic framework into concrete operational actions and results to be achieved by all stakeholders, NCLW developed – in a participatory approach – a plan of action that sets forth key interventions under each of the 12 strategic objectives along with indicators. The four years action plan was validated in early 2013 (2013-2016) and preparatory work was carried out throughout 2013 to transform it onto a soft application to be launched and adopted by all stakeholders by mid -2014.  The compiled data and information requested from stakeholders covers implementation progress made throughout 2013.

Based on the above, NCLW and UNFPA seek to identify and engage a data analyst expert whose prime responsibility is to process and analyze the data received from stakeholders and develop an analytical report. The report shall be drafted and developed based on (a) the compilation of data, (b) related references and (c) women strategy and its action plan. 

It is hoped that yearly reports would be developed and disseminated that would allow women machinery, national stakeholders, partners, donors, development agencies, etc to (a) observe/assess progress made at the national and local levels on gender equity, equality, and empowerment of women as well as challenges, (b) monitor the implementation of the women strategy in general and the 3 years action plan in particular, (c) contribute to future CEDAW reports, (d) guide future revisions of the women strategy and development of the next multi-year action plan, and (e) use the report findings for various purposes such as programming, policy development, advocacy and fund raising.     

2. Functions and tasks

Under the overall guidance and direct supervision of the National Director, the Data Analyst expert will be undertaking various tasks as described below:

  • Prepare a methodological plan with key milestones, timeline and deliverables;
  • Conduct a desk review of pertinent studies, assessments, reports, documents relevant to the objectives of the women strategy and action plan;
  • Review online and raw data received by NCLW and presented through tailored spreadsheets, tables, graphs, etc.;
  • Transform, validate, and model data with the purpose of understanding the data best suited to address given questions/sectors/areas;
  • Analyze the data in accordance with the 12 objectives of the women strategy and plan of action;
  •  Explore and apply new data visualization techniques (such as infographics) to increase insight and visibility to data trends;
  •  Submit draft report (based on an outline to be discussed with NCLW and UNFPA);
  • Ensure final report is comprehensive and inclusive of all comments obtained from UNFPA and NCLW (as well as others if relevant)
  • Prepare a power point presentation (20-25 slides) summarizing the main findings of the report; and
  • Take part in 1-2 technical meetings to disseminate the findings of the report 

3. Final Deliverables

The expert will be expected to deliver the following:

  • An analytical Arabic report highlighting progress made, challenges encountered, coordination and partnerships, policy and programme implications and way forward. The report shall include – in addition to the narrative sections – tables, graphs, quotes, infographics, and references;  (A detailed outline of the report including annexes will be discussed with the expert and agreed upon). The final report must be edited by the expert.
  • An executive summary document of the report (not more than 10 pages) in English; and
  • A power point presentation (20-25 slides) in Arabic summarizing the main findings of the report.

4. NCLW contribution

To facilitate the work of the expert, NCLW will be providing the following:

  • Raw data received through the online application
  • Pertinent reports including previous CEDAW reports
  • National women strategy and action plan
  • Review and input on the draft report, executive summary and power point presentation
  • Work space for the expert if need be

5. Required qualifications



Masters degree  in Social Sciences, Anthropology, Women Studies,  Development Studies, or equivalent work experience.


  • At least 6 years of increasingly responsible experience in data analysis and monitoring with focus on gender/development/human rights related work. 
  • At least 4 years experience in research (both qualitative and quantitative), with a strong emphasis on spatial analysis
  • Experience in strategic analysis and report writing
  • Familiarity with governmental and non-governmental entities in Lebanon is essential
  • Familiarity with UN work is desirable


  • Working in teams
  • Communicating information and ideas
  • Innovation and marketing of new approaches
  •  Job knowledge/technical expertise
  • Results orientation/Commitment to excellence

Language requirements:

Fluency and excellent writing skills in Arabic.  Good English and /or French is essential  


Interested candidates who meet the above qualifications should apply on line by submitting an updated CV detailing work experience that is relevant to the vacancy requirements as indicated in the TORs.

The CV should be submitted to the following email address: info@nclw.org.lb no later than August 4, 2014. 

NCLW will only be responsible to respond to those applicants submitting the required CV and in which there is further interest.

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CRTD.A Post Vacancy


2 Field Officers

(In Beqaa and South Lebanon)


Duration of the post: 1 year

Immediate Recruitment


As part of its Women Economic Empowerment Programme and RUWOMED project, CRTD.A is recruiting two Project Field Officers to support the implementation of the project.


The Women Economic Empowerment Programme (WEEP) (www.weeportal-lb.org) works with around 40 rural women’s cooperatives in different parts of Lebanon. Activities include capacity building, access to markets, development of internal governance of organizations, women’s involvement in economic policy making, and a knowledge component that includes research and connection of know how. As of early 2013, CRTD.A started implementing a new EU financially supported WEEP component in cooperation with the Assembly of Cooperation and Peace (ACCP)  a Spanish NGO the Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committee (PARC) (http://www.pal-arc.org/arabic.html)and the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI), http://www.enpi-info.eu/
 The new project, named RUWOMED (http://www.enpicbcmed.eu/sites/default/files/ruwomed.pdf), aims to support economic empowerment of rural and marginalized women in the Mediterranean and strengthen cross-border socio-economic relationships.

The RUWOMED FOs are entrusted with the follow-up, implementation and monitoring of field level activities of the RUWOMED project including close engagement with field beneficiaries.


Role and responsibilities of the RUWOMED-FO

The RUWOMED-FO is in charge of the implementation and follow-up of all the field level components of the RUWOMED project.

More specifically, he/she will have the following responsibilities:

1) Maintain continuous contact and liaison with project beneficiaries at field level

2) Conduct mapping or fact finding when necessary

3) Plan the implementation of activities at field level

4) Monitor and report on implementation

5) Providing reporting requirements as requested by field coordinator

6) Providing projects communications as and when needed

7) Regular coordination and liaison with the CRTD.A office in Beirut.


Successful candidates will have:

● At least three years experience in similar or related contexts

● Familiarity with work environment and with RWCs and the context in which they operate

● Fluency in Arabic

● Ability to travel to project’s activities sites

● Commitment to gender equality and social justice


This position is for one year with the possibility of a short period of extension.


Interested candidates should submit their CV by e-mail to vacancy@crtda.org.lb no later than 25 July 2014 (please indicate FO in the subject line)


Only short listed candidates will be contacted.

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Le nombre de Femmes en Politique au Liban est a mon avis honteux.

Une seule femme au Gouvernment en 2014: Le celebre pouvoir executif reste en deca de nos expectations d’activistes et de citoyens et citoyennes.

4 femmes au Parlement: Notre celevre pouvoir legislatif gagne une des pire places dans le nombre des femmes au monde.

WomenInParliament_LEBANON Rita Chemaly

Statistiques sur le nombre de femmes au parlement libanais (2014) Source IPU

Voici une des illustrations prises de “L’inter Parliamentary Union:


Que faire pour que le Liban ne soit pas a la traine dans la participation politique des femmes?

Mettre en place des cellules de travail politique et strategique dans tous les partis politiques.

Non les femmes dans les partis politiques ne sont pas uniquement la pour creer des comites de Brunch, Breakfast et VIp soirees. Ni sont la juste pour les comites de bienfaisances.

Elles ont leur mot a dire en ce qui concerne l’economie du pays, le travail informel, la strategie de defense, la politique exterieure et interieure , l’armee et autres….

Allez citoyennes de ma patrie, ecrivons, actons et participons activement aux Choix de Notre Cite!

Rita Chemaly

Pour plus de details sur le systeme politique libanais et la participation des femmes, il est possible de checker mes articles precedents:

For a list of all related articles in different languages:

Rita Chemaly

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2 weeks ago I was attending a training aiming at launching a campaign to empower women economically.

16 personalities which one are you test Chemaly

Yes, for this time I was a trainee and not the trainer, the trainer chosen holds  a background in psychology. And even if on the spot I couldn’t find the personality test relevant, I do think that I learned something new,

Even though I totally dislike using it to classify people!!

And here is a question to my dear friends Fady, Zein, and other councillors and psychologists , do you really use such tests to verify the personality of others in your clinics? Or when doing your HR counselling!??!?

Labelling people in my opinion has disastrous consequences on their advancement. and on their self-esteem.

But for me and for the fun part I am still trying the exercise the trainer gave us on my family, and friends 🙂

Because of the exercises done and the new topics based on the trainer’s researches around “how to know the other” , it was interesting for me to get to know the other PERSONALITY , based on Briggs Myers personality test! Yes to all the Lebanese Magazines (You can use it for your test part)!!

here is the full name of the research and here are some links I googled (You can try the test and check your personality). Though I don’t recommend you to do it on your other half … 🙂

Based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, you may find if your are:  passionate, perceptive, Extravert, introvert, bref….

yalla use the test online and have fun “categorising” the others and Yourself! Attention do not take it too seriously do it for the fun part.

Here is the personality test for free in english it will take around 10 minutes for you to fill it! 🙂


ps: my test didn’t work out, 🙂

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Executive Director


The Anna Lindh Euro-Med Foundation (ALF) focuses on bringing people together from across the Mediterranean to improve mutual respect between cultures and to support civil society working for a common future for the region. It is co-financed by the 42 countries of the Union for the Mediterranean and the European Commission. In accordance with ALF Statutes, “the Executive Director shall be appointed by the Board of Governors. The Board of Governors will vote for one candidate out of the short list presented by the European Commission”. The process for recruiting the new Executive director is now open (see job description (http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/where/neighbourhood/regional-cooperation/e…) and applications shall be received before the 28th August 2014. – See more at: http://www.annalindhfoundation.org/job-opportunities#sthash.KXHSeg8H.dpuf


For all those who are interested here is the link to the full Job description and application procedure:




Executive director of the Anna Lindh Foundation

Post based in Alexandria, Egypt

(3 years, up to 6 years)



We are

The European Commission is in charge of the pre-selection of the Executive Director of the Anna

Lindh Foundation.

The Anna Lindh Foundation is an inter-governmental institution bringing together civil society and

citizens across the Mediterranean to build trust and improve mutual understanding. It has a legal

personality as an international organisation based in Alexandria (Egypt) and registered with the

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Arab Republic of Egypt.

The Foundation was created by the governments of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership – the farreaching

political agreement established in 1995 between the European Union and its Southern

Mediterranean partners with the purpose to bring people together from across the Mediterranean to

improve mutual respect between cultures and to support civil society working for a common future for

the region.

Since 2005, the Anna Lindh Foundation has launched and supported action across fields impacting on

mutual perceptions as well as developing a region-wide Network of over 4000 civil society

organisations. Through its action and reflection the ALF aims to contribute to the development of an

Intercultural Strategy for the Euro-Mediterranean Region, providing recommendations to decisionmakers

and institutions and advocating for shared values. The main scope of the ALF is overcoming

the misunderstandings and stereotypes which affect relations between and within the societies of the

Region, a task which became of utmost importance in the last decade. As a contribution to the

creation of a space of prosperity, coexistence and peace, the ALF works to restore trust in dialogue

and bridge the gaps in mutual perceptions, as well as promoting diversity and coexistence.

The Foundation is co-funded by the European Commission and the 42 countries of the Union for the

Mediterranean and its contracting procedures are in line with the EU procedures stipulated in the

Practical Guide to Contract procedures for EU external actions.

We propose

The challenging and high-profile position of Executive Director of the Anna Lindh Foundation

comprises the following main responsibilities:

Prepare the multi-annual work programme of the Foundation and its budget in consultation

with the President and the national networks;

Appoint and head the staff of the Foundation;

Ensure the stability of the structure of the Foundation and its compliance with the Foundation’s


Maintain linkages with the network of national networks and guarantee good contacts between

the networks themselves;

Prepare the annual work programme for adoption by the Board of Governors and to ensure its

implementation in consultation with the ALF President.

Execute the budget;

Submit periodic and annual activity reports as well as financial accounts to the Board of

Governors for adoption;

Maintain transparent procedures and correct circulation of information concerning all activities

done or supported by the Foundation;

Prepare the meetings of the Board of Governors.

According to the ALF Status, the Executive Director shall be the legal representative of the


We look for

Based on the above, the following are the proposed criteria for evaluation of eligible applications for

the purpose of short-listing for interview for the post of ALF Executive Director:

The candidate should be a national of one of the following UfM Mediterranean Partner

Country: Albania, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya,

Mauritania, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Palestine, Tunisia or Turkey.

Hold a University degree.

Have at least 15 years of relevant professional experience, and at least 5 years of

professional experience related to intercultural dialogue or civil society in the Euro-Med region.

Have practical experience in programmes in intercultural areas or engaging with civil society


Have experience with international cooperation and dialogue and institutions and for a from

the southern Mediterranean.

Have an extensive knowledge of international standards in general management of

international organisations.

Have an extensive knowledge of international standards in financial management.

Have an extensive knowledge of experience in human resources management, including in an

international environment

Have knowledge in the management of donor funded programme(s).

Previous experience with project management, in particular with EU funds, in countries of the

southern Mediterranean region will be a strong asset.

Knowledge of EU policies in the region and more specifically on youth, gender and towards

civil society

The candidate must be computer literate.

Excellent communication skills are essential.

The candidate shall be fluent in English and French and in one of the Mediterranean Partner

Country languages.

Selection and appointment

In accordance with the ALF statute, the Executive Director shall be appointed by the Board of

Governors for a term of office of three years which may be extended once for a total of maximum six

years. The Board of Governors will vote for one candidate out of the short list presented by the

European Commission. As part of this selection procedure, candidates may be called for an interview

with the selection committee members, in September 2014.

The successful candidate will be recruited by the Anna Lindh Foundation at a net salary ranking 144

000 € and 159 000 €/ year (depending on experience). He/ she must successfully complete a ninemonth

probation period.

The selected candidate will have to abide by the national fiscal regulation applicable to him/her.

Equal opportunities

The European Commission applies a policy of equal opportunities and non-discrimination.

Application procedure

Before submitting your application, you should carefully check whether you meet all the eligibility

criteria, particularly those concerning the level of education, the type of diploma obtained and

professional experience required.

If you want to apply, you must send a CV in Word or PDF format and a letter of motivation (maximum

8 000 characters) to the following email address: executivedirector.alf@ec.europa.eu

Once the deadline for registration has passed, you will no longer be able to apply. Late registrations

will not be accepted.

Both the CV and letter must be written in English or French.

On completion of your application, you will receive an acknowledgement of receipt. If you do not

receive the acknowledgement of receipt, your application has not been registered.

Please note that it is not possible to monitor the progress of your application online. You will be

contacted directly regarding the status of your application.

If you have a disability that prevents you from registering online, you may submit your application (CV

and letter of motivation) on paper by registered mail, postmarked no later than the closing date for

registration. All subsequent communication will be by post. In this case, you must enclose with your

CV and motivation letter, a certificate attesting your disability, issued by a recognised body. You

should also set out on a separate sheet of paper any special arrangements you think are needed to

make it easier for you to take part in the selection procedure.

If you require more information and/or encounter technical problems, please send an e-mail to HRexecutivedirector.


Closing date

The closing date for application is 28th August 2014 at 6 pm Brussels time.

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For those interested in applying for the call for candidature of the  Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the post of Head of Admin and finance, please do follow the link below, http://www.annalindhfoundation.org/sites/annalindh.org/files/documents/page/call_for_candidature_hoaf_final.pdf

good Luck!

Rita Chemaly


Call for Candidature

to the Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation

for the Dialogue between Cultures (ALF)


The Anna Lindh Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the Dialogue between Cultures

(http://www.annalindhfoundation.org) has a legal personality as an international organisation

based in Alexandria (Egypt) and registered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the

Arab Republic of Egypt.

The Foundation was created by the governments of the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership

– the far-reaching political agreement established in 1995 between the European Union

and its Southern Mediterranean partners with the purpose to bring people together from

across the Mediterranean to improve mutual respect between cultures and to support

civil society working for a common future for the region.

To fulfil this objective, the Foundation leads regional initiatives in the Euro-Med region

and supports local activities carried out by civil society organisations which advocate a

better understanding among people, religions and beliefs. The Foundation works as

Network of Networks in the 42 Euro-Mediterranean countries.

The Foundation is co-funded by the European Commission and the 42 countries of the

Union for the Mediterranean and its contracting procedures are in line with the EU

procedures stipulated in the Practical Guide to Contract procedures for EU external


The Anna Lindh Foundation seeks for recruitment, as of 1 October 2014

(provisional date), one Head of Administration and Finance Unit.


In order to be eligible, applicants must be nationals of one of the 42 EuroMed countries

(Albania; Algeria; Austria; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Cyprus;

Czech Republic; Denmark; Egypt; Estonia; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Hungary;

Ireland; Israel; Italy; Jordan; Latvia; Lebanon; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Malta; Mauritania;

Monaco; Montenegro; Morocco; Palestine; Poland; Portugal; Romania; Slovak Republic;

Slovenia; Spain; Sweden; The Netherlands; Tunisia; Turkey; United Kingdom).


Candidatures including a CV of not more than five pages (format:

http://europass.cedefop.eu.int) and a one-page letter of motivation in English shall be sent to the email address candidature@euromedalex.org before end of 16 August 2014 clearly indicating the reference number of the post.

Post Ref. no. AF/2014/HoU/1


Head of Administration and Finance Unit

International Post

General Management Duties

Assisting the Executive Director in implementing the strategic goals of the ALF and

giving direction and leadership towards achieving its mandate and objectives.

Replacing the Executive Director and representing the ALF in his/her absence or as

per delegation of tasks.

Day-to-day management of ALF Headquarters in Alexandria with responsibilities

regarding the budgetary and financial dimensions of all the ALF Operations.

Planning and allocating resources to effectively staff and accomplish the ALF work.

Planning, evaluating, and improving the efficiency of processes and procedures to

enhance speed, quality, efficiency, and output.

Establishing and maintaining relevant controls and feedback systems to monitor the

operations of the Unit.

Ensuring that all the ALF decisions are taken in accordance with approved Manuals of

Procedures and in line with approved work plans.

Ensuring proper communication flows and reporting inwards and outwards notably

towards donors.

Preparing timely management information.

Specific Duties and Accountabilities

Financial Management:

Preparing the forecasted budget for the ALF Triennial Programme and the Annual

Work-Plans, in collaboration with the Head of Programme and Operations Unit.

Providing financial reporting and financial information for the ALF Management, the

Board of Governors and the EC.

Producing monthly financial statements and providing effective financial advice to the

Executive Director.

Contributing to the overall Foundation’s implementation strategy and operations as

the Head of Unit responsible for the contracts and finance.

Supervising the execution of the budget in line with the generally accepted accounting

rules and proposing sound financial solutions to ALF operational challenges.

Preparing ALF activities financial planning against the funds made available by the

Member States, the European Union and/or other donors.

Developing and updating ALF’s rules and procedures and the manuals describing

adequate systems of internal control.

Ensuring the financial validation of procedures proposed in the framework of the

Foundation Programme implementation and its relevant financial transactions.

Maintaining an efficient control and software records of ALF funds and assets.

Being responsible of the financial and contractual dimension of the monitoring and

evaluation of projects implementation and ensuring the payments related to them.

Serving as the principal contact and coordinator with audit bodies, providing them with

the necessary assistance.

Signing on matters related to “Purchase and Procurement Orders” for supplies and

services in compliance with the articles of the manual of procedures.

Being joint signatory authority on payments (checks, transfers) beside the Executive


Procurement Management:

Managing the development of procurement policies and procedures and providing

recommendations based on the EU and donors’ regulations.

Supporting the ALF Units by carrying out the appropriate procedures for the

procurement of goods and services of the best value, best quality at best prices to

meet the Programme’s needs.

Developing and implementing international donors’ procurement tools and


Leading the procurement team in processing duties, plans and allocating work

assignments, implementing and monitoring bid schedule.

Ensuring the process of drafting tender dossiers and serving as Chairperson for

evaluation committee meetings and announcing the awarded contracts, contacting

the awarded contractors, and following up contract management till the expiration of

the contract.

Monitoring the quality of procurement work team’s output, reviewing all contracts prior

to its execution.

Collaborating with other Heads of Unit to maximise the use of staff resources and

ensure efficient overall planning.

Developing and delivering training in procurement and contracting procedures to the

staff and ALF beneficiaries.

Sub-granting Scheme Management:

Developing and monitoring the guidelines for applicants and launching calls for

proposals, coordinating the evaluation process, serving as Chairperson for evaluation

committee meetings and ensuring the follow up on contract.

Human Resources Management:

Developing the Human Resources policy and ensuring its implementation.

Supervising the development of the Internship Programme Guidelines.

Reporting to the Executive Director, regularly, on HR issues.

Drafting the calls for candidatures and ensuring the follow up of employment


Ensuring that local laws and corporate policies are consistently and fairly


Serving as Chairperson for ALF internal evaluation committee meetings.

Monitoring the regular maintenance of the personnel files and ensuring the periodical

performance appraisal review.

Administrative duties:

Responsible for updating the Manual of Procedures, the Mission Guide and the

Personnel Procedures and Policy Manual.

Liaising with the EU, the Euro-Med member States and other donors to review

agreements and receiving financial contributions and agreements.

Ensuring the sound collaboration with the Egyptian Authorities (i.e. social insurance

department, tax authority etc.).

Serving as the principal contact with ALF legal advisor.

Carrying out other duties assigned by the Executive Director.


The successful candidate for this post must have:

Qualifications and skills

Must have a minimum of bachelor’s degree in accounting and/or business

management or equivalent qualification or comparable professional experience; Postgraduated

candidates will be considered an asset.

Must have proficient knowledge of standard computer software (MS Word®, Excel®,

PowerPoint and Outlook®). Knowledge of other project management tools and

accountability software will be considered an asset.

Must be fluent in spoken and written English with good reporting, interpersonal and

communication skills; Proficiency in French and/or Arabic will be considered a

valuable asset.

General Professional experience

At least 12 years of overall experience of which a minimum of 4 years in a similar post

in international donor-funded programmes involving project and team coordination.

Proven experience and ability in leading a multicultural team demonstrating

professional facilitation, mentoring and advising skills.

Experience in elaborating/updating Manual of Procedures, Mission Guide and

Personnel Procedures and Policy Manual.

Experience in international donors’ management tools and methodologies as well as

in processes related to project preparation & implementation, resource management,

and stakeholder communications.

High degree of initiative, flexibility and resourcefulness with a lead for and drive for

results. Organisational skills and ability to multi-task and to work under pressure and

capacity to prioritize assigned responsibilities.

Specific professional experience

Compulsory sound knowledge of and working experience with EU financial and

contractual procedures. The number of years will be valorized.

At least 4 years of experience in general financial management of an autonomous

structure similar to ALF putting in place accountability, financial and administrative


At least 2 years of previous experiences in conducting EU tender procedures for

services and supply including contract management.

At least 1 year of previous experience in conducting EU Grant procedure from

launching till contract management. The number and complexity of experiences will

be evaluated.

A previous professional experience in Egypt will be considered an asset.

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Did you know that a person with mental disability has  many privileges? that person can do Anything just like you!

and here is the great play that has been produced and executed by Saydeh community of Faith and Light (In which I am a very proud member)

the Play is called let us create bridges, and features 2 brothers living in a big farm with their respective families and children.

One day a dispute separated the brothers and they wanted to create a Wall to separate their farm.

the carpenter didn’t understand what was asked from him and one night instead of a Big wall separating the 2 farms, He and his team created a Bridge, bringing together again the 2 brothers and their families.

The hole story and the play was produced , executed and implemented by Faith and Light Community in Lebanon “Saydeh” and played in May 2014 in Lebanon

below is the video posted om You Tube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UJUBQKrsro

Rita Chemaly ( A very proud member of Faith and Light)

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The year 2014 was meant to be the year that ended the Program of Action adopted by the Cairo Conference for Population and Development (ICPD) in 1994. The document was a paradigm shift in understanding and framing reproductive health and rights and prioritizing individuals’ rights to choose and make decisions with regards to their own bodies. Now that the General Assembly extended the PoA indefinitely, and will review country progress at its 2014 session, it is the right moment to evaluate the extent to which different countries in the region implemented the PoA and how this has changed the realities lived by women and youth regarding their sexual and reproductive health and rights. In the MENA region, acknowledging reproductive rights in a UN consensus document has greatly contributed in enhancing the countries’ policies especially in maternity care, family planning services and HIV/AIDS. Yet, cultural and religious discourses still play a major role in holding back sexual rights especially for young people. Women’s autonomy over their bodies is still a highly debated issue because of the deeply embedded patriarchal culture, which is also reflected in an unprecedented increase in the level of sexual violence against women.

Given the diversity of socioeconomic conditions in the MENA region, it is difficult to make categorical statements about the situation of reproductive and sexual health and rights. Yet, in many countries disparities in access to reproductive healthcare persist, where poorer, less educated and rural woman face many barriers to adequate and affordable healthcare services. In most MENA countries, women and young people are excluded from decision-making circles, which is reflected in the gender-insensitive policies adopted by these states. Adopting a progressive agenda for post-2014 will definitely positively influence women’s and young people’s lives and make governments more accountable for the health and lives of their citizens. It will also help to integrate women and youth in designing, implementing and monitoring policies that influence their reproductive health and will provide guidance on achieving reproductive justice.

Full report http://www.wluml.org/sites/wluml.org/files/report_-_reclaiming_and_redefining_rights.pdf


Summary source http://www.wluml.org/resource/reclaiming-and-redefining-rights-icpd20-status-sexual-and-reproductive-health-and-rights-mi

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While preparing the Paternity leave draft law in Lebanon, I have read today this article in WeNews related to family leave in the USA. 4 Weeks’ of Paid Family Leave? We Can Afford That, By Katherine Rose.

For those who are interested in following the topic here is the article below

Rita Chemaly


4 Weeks’ of Paid Family Leave? We Can Afford That, By Katherine Rose.

WeNews commentator, Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act has been bobbing around Congress since 2000. Now that the president has thrown his weight behind it let’s get it done.




President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the White House Summit on Working Families in Washington, D.C., June 23, 2014.


Credit: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza


(WOMENSENEWS)–The president is right. We need better family leave policies in the United States. He said so at the big White House meeting last week and it deserves repeating until we get it done.

Currently all we have in the way of guaranteed parental leave is the Family and Medical Leave Act, passed in to law during the Clinton administration and overseen by the Department of Labor.

This act provides up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for individuals who have a new child or need to care for an immediate family member with a serious medical condition.

The Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act, a bill that has been bobbing around Congress since 2000, has been introduced eight times. In 2009 it passed the U.S. House of Representatives but was stopped by the Senate.

We need this law for so many reasons. For one thing, it would guarantee four weeks of paid leave to all federal employees. And that’s a biggie.

It could also usher in legislation to overcome so many inadequacies of the Family and Medical Leave Act. Bigger still!

The 1993 law was groundbreaking because it provided job protection for those who wanted to take parental leave.

But not everyone qualifies for the Family and Medical Leave Act. It is underutilized by those who do qualify because many families cannot afford to go without one parent’s income for a 12-week period. Those who can take sick pay, vacation pay and short-term disability pay to cover the income of their leave come back to work without any more available days off from work for illness or personal time until their paid time off re-ups.

Studies find that a majority of mothers prefer to care for their own infants during the first year (or have their spouse/partner care for the child) and we can see a disconnect between what U.S. policy provides and what may actually be desired by and available to many families.

Infant Care Lacking, Expensive

Part of that stay-home preference has to be tied to the lack of quality infant care and the high cost of the care that is available. Parents in the U.S. may pay anywhere from $4,850 to almost $16,400 a year for full-time infant care in a child care center, depending on the state in which they reside. And that is just for one child.

Imagine having an infant and a 3-year-old and the costs become prohibitive for many.

Meanwhile, the shortage of high-quality infant child care is acute. Recent statistics reveal that almost 6 million children under the age of 3 are cared for by someone other than their own parent(s), and more than 40 percent of those children are being cared for in settings that are poor quality. This isn’t good for anyone–not the children receiving the care or the society that they will join as adults.

Under the existing unpaid leave law, family bonding and medical emergencies are lumped together. We need to get away from that and stop treating the birth of a baby as a disability in a work environment. It’s a normal life event that employers should treat as such. In addition to extended parental leave policies, we need to think creatively about how to help corporations and families fund them.

As the White House and others hammered home at their meeting last week, the United States is a conspicuous laggard on parental leave policies. In most other industrialized countries, paid parental leave for both parents lasts from three month up to 18 months. That’s months, not weeks.

Of course these countries tax citizens at a very high rate, which means the United States may not be able to mirror approaches in places such as Canada, France, Germany and Italy, to name just a few.

However, in the United States a four-week paid leave policy based on a payroll tax is realistic. For each individual it would only cost in the range of $3,000, based on an average U.S. median weekly income of $796 during the first quarter. Even with fluctuations in pay across industries and sectors, we can afford this. For the sake of our families and our work-balance sanity, it’s a bargain.



Katherine Rose is an associate professor in early child development and education at Texas Woman’s University and a public voices fellow with The OpEd Project at TWU. She is also a mother who struggles to balance work and family.

Source: http://womensenews.org/story/parenting/140630/4-weeks-paid-family-leave-we-can-afford

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