Rashaya Environmental Committee organization (RECO) was established after the conduction of a training course by the Environmental Committee in Rashaya to prepare environmental facilitators in Rashaya towns. This came after an agreement to appoint representatives from each association to complete the training course, which was held at the public library in the municipality building of Rashaya Al-Wadi on 9th and 10th January 2016.
The funding came from the “BALADIYATI” initiative, where twenty-two different entities were represented, including local associations, municipalities in the region, their federations, educational institutions, as well as environmental and social activists. Documents for the establishment of the association were submitted, and the association received registration number 2016/1276.


In 2012, there was an attempt to revive the environmental associations that existed at that time in the district of Rashaya, which numbered approximately 80 associations, but only 6 of them were specialized in environmental matters. Unfortunately, the associations were inactive because many reasons prevented the associations from performing their tasks adequately, including but not limited to the lack of funding and legal paperwork issues with the Ministry of Interior.
The idea in 2012 was to have a team dedicated to environmental issues at the level of Rashaya district, especially since there were projects for waste management, for protecting migratory birds, and many other active projects. However, what actually mobilized this group the most was the preparations for the municipal elections in 2016, which began in June 2015. There was a waste crisis and accumulation of waste that occurred in Beirut, and this major scandal revealed improper waste treatment methods. Thus, a decision had to be made before the crisis reached us. Therefore, the idea was to have a specialized environmental committee consisting of experts and influential individuals in the community.
This committee included representatives from municipalities and municipal federations, social associations, ministries, and the private sector. However, when we officially got on track, the enthusiasm began to decline because there were now more responsibilities and accountability. The notion here was that this committee should have a legal status. We tried to obtain a license for a network of associations in Rashaya, but we couldn’t because no law in Lebanon allows for the establishment of such a network of associations. Therefore, the decision was to conduct a training workshop for the representatives of associations, and all the associations in the Rashaya district (80), all the municipalities (26), and all the schools (88) were officially invited. Unfortunately, only 20 entities responded. A two-day training course titled “Training of Environmental Facilitators” was conducted for 20 individuals. This course aimed to establish a basis for an association whose objective would be environmental work and protection. On December 15, 2015, the team was formed, and environmental strategies began to be formulated. In early 2016, 10 out of the 20 trained individuals volunteered to become the founders of the Rashaya Environmental Committee Organization. Moreover, an application was submitted to the Ministry of Interior, and on June 28, 2016, we received the NOTICE NO.1276.
The municipal elections were over in May, and as an association, we visited the municipalities, introduced ourselves, and discussed our projects with them. Among these projects was the demand for the opening of an agricultural school in Rashaya, which was opened after three years of our advocacy due to joint efforts. We also demanded the establishment of an office for the Ministry of Environment in the Rashaya district because we didn’t have a nearby office. Unfortunately, there was no response due to the lack of financial resources. However, we didn’t stop here, we reached out to all the ministers of environment who succeeded one another in leading the ministry, and they were all responsive to our issues. They collaborated with us on all the matters we worked on, especially regarding deforestation, bird protection, violations of hunting laws, waste management, as well as youth and women’s empowerment through the training courses we conducted.


Since its establishment, the association has worked towards achieving environmental sustainability by instilling environmental culture in the minds of the younger generation through:
• Purposeful initiatives
• Establishing environmental clubs in schools
• Promoting respect for environmental balance and understanding of environmental elements
• Efficient management of waste and resources
• Participating in tree-planting campaigns
• Raising awareness in the field of sustainable management of solid household waste.


Promote environmental sustainability, empower women and youth, and enhance community well-being through innovative projects and partnerships.


A world where the environment is protected, women and youth are empowered to reach their full potential, and communities thrive in harmony with nature.