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Day 1/Panels




Residential and alternative care systems in Lebanon


In Lebanon, as per law 422, the juvenile judge can choose to protect at-risk children by placing them in a residential center. However, these centers don’t always manage to respond effectively to the physical and psychological needs of children. Current trends show an evolution towards promoting alternative care systems such as kinship or foster care. While there are entry points in law 422 that could allow for the implementation of alternative care systems, there are many bottlenecks as well, often related to religious beliefs and culture in Lebanon. How can we find suitable alternative care modalities that are adapted to the Lebanese context?


  • - Judicial framework of child protection - challenges with measures for protection and possible alternatives

  • - Residential care in Lebanon

  • - Alternative care systems in Lebanon

  • - From alternative care to the importance of prevention: the “Isibindi” model


Moderator: Ms. Bassima Roumani (himaya)




Children, institutions, and sexuality


There is a culture of silence surrounding sexuality in Lebanon creating obstacles for the detection and prevention of child sexual abuse. Sexuality is rarely discussed with young people as it is most often considered taboo in their families, religious and educational institutions. This leads to young people having little information and guidance on healthy and acceptable sexual relationships. Ideally, sexuall education should be made available to equip young people with the skills, knowledge, and values to make responsible choices about their sexual and social relationships. Also, community members in contact with children such as parents, teachers and other institutions should be able to discuss sexuality as a whole, including sexual violence, and offer guidance on how to protect oneself. The aim of this panel is to work towards facilitating the discussion around sexuality and highlighting its need for young people.


  • - The role of religious organizations and institutions in child protection

  • - The question of sexual education  in Lebanon

  • - Integrating a sexual education program in schools


Moderator: Ms. Patricia Khoury (himaya)




Emerging issues in child protection


As society and technology evolve, professionals in the child protection sector are facing new and re-emerging challenges that require more specialized interventions. One of these issues is that of children with special needs, a particularly vulnerable population that isn’t always receiving enough attention and support. On another hand, with the prevalence of smartphones and tablets, children have unrestricted access to content of all kinds. This creates new opportunities but also exposes children to potential dangers such as cyberbullying and cybercrime that are on the rise. Finally, while child exploitation is not a new issue, the influx of refugees and the precariousness of their living situation has lead to a significant increase in exploitation rates. Keeping in mind the particularities of our context and culture, how can we develop adapted and effective strategies for these different issues?


  • - Child protection and children with special needs

  • - Protection challenges for unaccompanied and separated children

  • - Cyberbullying and cybercrimes: role of the cybercrime unit


Moderator: Ms. Sima Antabli (himaya)



Towards a “resilient” child protection network


The child protection sector is a network of institutions and organizations working with the common goal of promoting the wellbeing and safety of children. In order to ensure long term protection for children, the sector should strive to be not only sustainable but also resilient. This means that implementation strategies should be adaptable to overcome context-specific challenges. One way to reach this goal is to link with other sectors that also work for the wellbeing of children such as the health sector. Buy-in from society as a whole regarding the issue of child protection must also be an objective for those involved. All the while, we should not forget that at the center of all these efforts are the children themselves. They are not only beneficiaries of our services but should be made active participants in their own protection. 


  • - Implementing a Child Protection Policy for healthcare institutions in Lebanon

  • - Involving citizens in Child Protection

  • - Child agency: Children’s active participation in protection efforts 


Moderator: Ms. Sandra Manachi (himaya)


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