Homat Al Hima Program aims to empower local community through knowledge
By Rania Khalil- Homat Al Hima Program Manager
In the framework of the BioConnect, a project funded by the European Union, we are working closely with local youth. The aim is to increase the knowledge of the local community members, so they can learn the importance of their nature and how to contribute to its protection.
During all this year, we are conducting trainings in all the Hima sites involved in the project, meeting local youth, Homat Al Hima, and delivering content related to each Hima: we are designing the training sessions according to the needs of each Hima and its nature.
Also, the sessions are interactive and adapted to the youth and each village. Below are the delivered sessions:
• Session 1 for West Bekaa, Ebel El Saqi, and Mansouri/Qleileh was an Introduction session. The objective was to have a general view of all that they will learn and have basic knowledge about: Homat Al Hima, Biodiversity, SPNL activities and aims, and how they can be involved and help in nature conservation. And also, several activities so they can enjoy their learning time.
• Session 2 in West Bekaa was about sustainable agriculture and biodiversity values. The participants learned about the importance of sustainable agriculture and its methods and approaches since their villages are well known for their agricultural activities. In addition, they learned the biodiversity values they should follow in nature and every day of their lives.
• Session 3 for West Bekaa Himas was conducted during June under “Fauna and Flora” and its monitoring. During this session, the participants learned about the fauna and flora in general and especially in their regions. They learned about classification, specifications, extinctions, priority species, endemics, and their monitoring, including how to count or record species.
• The session 2 for Ebel El Saqui and the session 2 for Qleileh/Mansouri were conducted during July; the themes delivered are “Ecotourism and guiding” and “Introduction to Forest Management”. It is essential that local youth learn about what forest management and how to manage forests in a sustainable way. And to learn about nature-based tourism, its principles, and what a guide is and how to be one in the Himas. And in Hima Ebel El Saqi, an extra session was delivered about wildfires since there is a high risk this month due to the high temperatures.
Our constant goal is to empower the local community through knowledge and awareness and to give hope to the new generation, and a new perspective to their existence around nature.