"We believe that women are vital contributors to economic and social progress."

While Lebanon is generally known for its recognition of the rights of girls and women, problems remain. The Makassed Association’s commitment to improving the lives of and opportunities for women dates back to Makassed founding in 1878, when it established two schools for girls in Beirut.

Though progress has been made in a variety of social and economic realms, women in Lebanon still face roadblocks in education, their careers and social opportunity.

In addition, recent statistics (Status of Women in Lebanon, Dr. Maral Tutelian) tell us that 15% of the families in Lebanon are headed by women.

The majority of these women, however, are old, illiterate and generally ill-prepared to shoulder such burdens.


Moreover, the disparity between the rich and the poor is great and is worsening. Many communities throughout the country are marginalized, living in poverty, under-served by public services such as water and electricity, and essentially ignored by the government.

Women Empowerment

In addition to providing traditional schooling opportunities for young girls, MFA also provides educational opportunities for nontraditional female students through the financial assistance to Makassed literacy and vocational training programs for women in underserved areas in Lebanon.

To directly address such needs, Al Makassed set up in 2014 Ward Al Makassed, the first community development center of its kind in Beirut’s impoverished neighborhood of Tarik Al-Jadidah. Its mission is to provide women and youth with job opportunities, education and capacity-building through rapid vocational training.

The center provides vocational training programs in fields such as cooking, sewing, and cosmetology for the women in Beirut’s underserved Tariq Al-Jadideh neighborhood. The program is designed to improve participants’ opportunities for success in the labor market, as well as to provide them with social skills that will enable them to function in the workplace.

Ward Al Makassed is divided into four units offering Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian women and youth efficient training sessions and the required skills to market and sell their foods and handcrafts through its catering services as well as in-house and external exhibitions. The center has so far succeeded in empowering 1,641 impoverished women living in the area and hailing from diverse cultural backgrounds and nationalities.
  • Literacy and life skills
  • Sewing and craftsmanship
  • Women’s beauty and cosmetics
  • Industrial kitchen and chocolate making

You can help by contributing 200 USD to cover the training of one woman.

Join hands with us to empower women to become productive members of the community.