CSP Helps Bechmezzine Municipality (North) Attract Diaspora Funding for Solar Streetlights
For the past few decades and amidst recurrent crises, the Lebanese diaspora has played a key role in supporting their families in Lebanon. Estimated at over $6 billion per year, Diaspora support has been crucial since the onset of the Lebanese economic crisis in 2019. As municipalities continue to face financial constraints in implementing new public service interventions, the USAID-funded Community Support Program (CSP) is training municipalities on how to attract diaspora support for needed community interventions. In that regard, CSP has trained so far the municipalities of Ain Ebel, Amioun, and Bechmezzine on designing needed interventions, networking with diaspora, writing proposals, cooperating with local NGOs for co-implementation, and managing finances to attract diaspora contributions for community development.
On July 27, 2023, Bechmezzine’s local community held its first meeting with the village’s diaspora network in Europe, the Arab countries, and the United States to attract diaspora contributions for solar streetlighting that would enhance safety and security in Bechmezzine. The meeting, which was virtual, included 26 participants and presented the importance of the needed solar street light intervention. The meeting also explained to participants the processes the municipality and the community will undertake for transparent procurement, sound financial management, and proper implementation of the intervention.
As of July 31, the diaspora has so far contributed $1500 towards the Bechmezzine intervention. Bechmezzine’s municipality plans to continue to attract diaspora funding and to secure the total amount by December 2023.