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					ARAB SALIM

SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT

BEIRUT - LEBANON

May 1997 – May 1999

UNDP - LIFE OFFICE 02/09/99 ARAB SALIM – SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT

INDEX
PROJECT IDENTIFICATION EXECUTIVE SUMMARY OF THE CASE DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT
CONTEXT PROJECT BACKGROUND IMPLEMENTATION PROCESS AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS AND TRAINING SORTING AND COLLECTING WASTE LIFE CONTRIBUTION ASSOCIATION‟S CONTRIBUTION TABLE “A”: REVENUES AND EXPENSES – BUDGET AND ACTUAL 3

3 4 4 7 8 8 9 9 10 11 12 13 14 14 14 14 15 15 16 – 30

IMPLEMENTATION PERFORMANCE ACHIEVEMENTS AND IMPACTS LESSONS LEARNED AND RECOMMENDATIONS
SOLIDARITY AND LEADERSHIP MEDIA ATTENTION LACK OF TECHNICAL SUPPORT LACK OF FINANCIAL SUPPORT

CONTACTS APPENDICES “A” TO “G”

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PROJECT IDENTIFICATION
Name or title of the project: Arab Salim – Solid Waste Management Location of the project: The town of Arab Salim, Nabatiyeh Muhafazat, South Lebanon Key area of focus: Sorting at the household level, selling recyclable, and home composting Starting date: May 1997 Finishing date: May 1999

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY OF THE CASE
A team of thirteen (13) dedicated women, members of the Arab Salim Women‟s Association, (the “Association”), started a solid waste management project in their small town of Arab Salim. Arab Salim is on the border of the security zone in Southern Lebanon and is sometimes under direct fire and siege. It is also severely impacted by war damage caused by the Israeli occupation. Protection of the environment by advocating and applying the “reduce, reuse, recycle” principle was the main objective of the Association. Their efforts generated enthusiasm throughout the community and gained the support of other Non Governmental Organizations (“NGO‟s”) concerned with the environment, as well as local authorities and governmental bodies such as the Ministry of Environment. The LIFE- funded solid waste management project in Arab Salim was launched with intense awareness and educational campaigns particularly in the area of sorting and composting, targeting schools, households and the private sector. The project attracted wide media attention and contributed to raising national awareness regarding the problems faced by local communities. Arab Salim‟s solid waste management project is a pilot project that can be used as an example of local communities finding solutions to local problems and as a model for proper implementation methods of solid waste management techniques. Even though revenues generated from current selling of recyclable materials are limited and may not sustain the project financially, it is crucial that this project proceeds with additional support and expands its role to be an example of progress regardless of difficult conditions.

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DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT
CONTEXT Lebanon (see map – Appendix A), with a total area of 10,452 km2, is situated East of the Mediterranean sea and stretches about 220 km along the coast and 50 km inland. With Syria at the North and East sides, and Israel at the South, Lebanon is divided into six counties (Muhafazats), Beirut, Mount Lebanon, North, South, Bekaa, and Nabatiyeh. Arab Salim is a village in the South of Lebanon. It is located at an altitude of 650m above sea level in the Nabatiyeh County (Muhafazat) in a place called “Iklim Al Toufah” which means “the Apple District”. It is a town of approximately 9,000 inhabitants counting the population of suburbs and nearby villages. The Zahrani river runs adjacent to the village which is overseen from the Mountain of Al-Rihan. As the name of the area refers, the region is known as one of the best agricultural producers of Southern Lebanon. There are forests and mountains in addition to ancient Roman ruins in the village. Lebanese and tourists alike appreciate the beauty of Arab Salim. Its main economy being dependent on tourism and agriculture, Arab Salim has one public school, one private school, a small dispensary, one gas station, and some minimarkets. There are no government buildings other than the public school. The village‟s agricultural activities consist mainly of the agriculture of carrots, olives, tobacco and different vegetables. With some negligible commerce activity, the village manages to maintain its economy with great dependence on its own productivity. Arabic is the main spoken language, followed by French. Arab Salim is fighting for its survival. The war that still goes on in Southern Lebanon makes it a difficult place to live. With Israel‟s occupation and regular shelling of the area, the Roman ruins were destroyed. The forests burned. The farmers fled during heavy attacks, leaving their land behind. Unable to care for their land, produce and irrigation systems, the livelihood of the farmers was severely impacted. With tighter means and revenues, farmers abandoned agriculture and turned to short term economic activities. With constant threats from Israel, the village was considered in danger and tourism stopped. Government bodies were no longer capable of performing their duties and maintaining the village. As the living conditions in the village deteriorated, environmental issues were completely ignored. Garbage accumulated in open dumps, spreading germs and diseases.

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CONTEXT (CONTINUED) Poor economic conditions resulting from the abandonment of agriculture and tourism along with uncontrolled spread of garbage added to the life threatening circumstances of war. Such living conditions generated concern and called for active measures. A woman with fierce determination faced the situation with courage. Ms. Zeinab Mokalled took the initiative in the summer of 1995 and invited twenty (20) women to a meeting to discuss the deteriorating conditions of Arab Salim. They wanted to find solutions to the different environmental problems their village was facing. Their first step was to meet with the Governor of Nabatiyeh, Mr. Ghazi Zaatar, to discuss the needs of the community. Pictures depicting the environmental conditions in Arab Salim were presented to him (see Appendix B). Meetings and contacts with other officials followed. They included the village deputy member of parliament, Mr. Abdel-Latif Zein, and the General Director of the Ministry of information, Mr. Mohammad Obeid. The women explained the possibility of alleviating the environmental and health problems caused by the current conditions. They introduced the idea of solid waste sorting. Government means were very limited; however, the women of Arab Salim received enough encouragement to move their ideas forward. “Secours Populaire Libanais” (a Lebanese NGO mainly concerned with health and relief services) provided them with a symbolic contribution of 450,000 LL (equivalent to US $ 298 ). They also received 50 bins for waste collection from the new Governor of Nabatiyeh, Mr. Mohammad El-Mawla. At the end of 1995, the women formed “The Arab Salim‟s Women Association” and elected Ms. Zeinab Mokalled as President. The Association aimed to raise environmental awareness among community members and implement a waste management sorting and collection program. It was not until November 4th, 1998 that the Association became legally recognised by the Lebanese authorities (Identification # 123/ad), under the new legal name of “Nidaa Al-Ard Association”. What started out as a women‟s gathering, resulted in a legal entity that encourages the participation of all concerned residents of Arab Salim and others. The Association‟s efforts to spread the word about their program throughout the village and its surrounding neighbourhoods proved fruitful. A clean up campaign was conducted by the Association with the participation of community members (see Appendix C). The Association and community members struggled to improve the quality of their life without any resources or assistance from local or central authorities, since the governmental bodies were inactive.

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CONTEXT (CONTINUED) The village municipal Council was practically inoperative. There was no mayor, and the municipality policeman left his post and was not replaced. The driver of the municipality‟s street sweeping truck and the secretary of the Council managed to neglect their duties too in the absence of performance monitoring measures. The local Government was not capable of dealing with social and local development issues or with environmental and ecological ones. In 1998, hope replaced despair as progressive steps were taken by the Lebanese Government to initiate elections of City and Village Councils (Municipal Boards). On June 7th , 1998 elections in the South brought up new, well-educated figures. The newly elected Arab Salim Municipal Council members, exclusively males, included doctors, engineers, businessmen, and farmers. They are as follows: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. Mr. Abd-El-Amir Farhat (Mayor), Businessman Mr. Kassem Hemadeh (Vice president), Engineer Dr. Ahmad Nour-El-Dine, Dentist Dr. Hatem Haidar, Gynaecologist Dr. Samih Safieh, Certified Public Accountant Mr. Abbas Nadar, Agronomist Mr. Abdel-Hussein Sharara, Businessman Mr. Mahmoud Daher, Businessman Mr. Ahmad Farhat, Merchant Mr. Ahmad Moussa, Merchant Mr. Mohammad Kamel Nadar, Agronomist Mr. Hassan Harb, Real Estate Trader Mr. Abdallah Shamseddine, Engineer Mr. Ali Hattab, Engineer Dr. Malek Saadeh, Dentist

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PROJECT BACKGROUND In a first step of its kind in the South of Lebanon, „Nidaa Al-Ard‟ raised the issue of solid waste management and worked hard to assure its successful initiation and sustainability. Financed by a grant from the UNDP-LIFE Program, the solid waste management project includes sorting at the household level, selling recyclables, and home composting. Members of „Nidaa Al-Ard‟ are mainly teachers and housewives. They are represented as follows: 1. Ms. Zeinab Mahmoud Mokalled, President, Teacher 2. Ms. Zeinab Farhat, Housewife 3. Ms. Salwa Mouguenieh, Housewife 4. Ms. Fatmeh Farhat, Housewife 5. Ms. Itaf Youness, Housewife 6. Ms. Hamda Haidar, Housewife 7. Ms. Insaf Youness, Housewife 8. Ms. Fatmeh Mahmoud, Teacher 9. Ms. Aline Haidar, Teacher 10. Ms. Roula Nadar, University Student 11. Ms. Siham Farhat, Kindergarten Teacher 12. Ms. Kadigeh Farhat, Student attending training in computer and accounting 13. Ms. Najat Farhat, Pharmacist Ms. Mokalled holds a Masters Degree in Arabic Literature and Language. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in “Language”. She teaches Arabic Literature at the Nabatiyeh High School for girls. Moreover, she writes articles in Arabic about the critical environmental situation of the region including the Zahrani River and suggests solid waste management solutions that call for the return to traditional lifestyles emphasising the use of natural products. Other members play important roles in impacting future generations by being homemakers, or teachers reaching students and other colleagues. For instance, Ms. Farhat‟s role (the pharmacist) is crucial. She explains the adverse effect of the current conditions on health and environment. The main objectives of the project are prevention of pollution caused by solid waste, protection of the environment, and promotion of cleanliness. By encouraging good environmental habits through behaviour modification and local initiatives, promoting environmental education and generating income through sale of recyclable waste, the NGO expects to achieve its main goals. Planned activities included household awareness campaigns, sorting waste at schools, transporting recyclables to industries, and promoting composting at the household level.

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PROJECT BACKGROUND (CONTINUED) Such activities are expected to expedite the effectiveness of the project in the village and its surroundings. While the LIFE Programme has a two-year term, the NGO is expected to continue its efforts and has permanent plans to be supported by the local community, other NGO‟s, the Ministry of Environment, as well as the private sector. In addition to funding, the LIFE National Coordinator (“NC”) and the National Selection Committee (“NSC”) provide guidance, technical assistance, as well as publicity and media support. Moreover, they promote institutional strengthening and dialogue among concerned parties through the program methodology. IMPLEMENTATION PROCESS Headed by Ms. Mokalled, several meetings were held to establish an implementation plan. Designed to be implemented by the 13-founding members of Nidaa Al-Ard, the project attracted full cooperation of 200 interested members of the community, and others from neighbouring villages. The project is implemented by 13 representatives from Nidaa Al-Ard referred to as Founding Members. AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS AND TRAINING Biweekly environmental awareness campaigns were held to acquaint the women with the concept of solid waste sorting mainly of plastic, glass and metal (see Appendix D). Involving all women in the community, campaign meetings were rotated from home to home in the village. Household visits by Founding Members contributed to the widespread understanding of the project‟s objectives throughout the community. Residents‟ participation was also defined. This triggered a need for an extensive training program to reach a greater number of citizens and diversify the interested group in terms of gender and age. Training aids and tools such as posters, pictures, videotapes, etc. were acquired and used to explain the issues relating to Solid Waste Management. Several factors were targeted during the training sessions namely, the alleviation of environmental damage caused by waste dumping, environmental friendly consumer practices, diffusion of information on waste management options, recycling, improving living conditions and developing community ties. The household awareness campaigns presented the project and its benefits to the households and required intensive participation from all the women. The campaigns and training sessions held at schools particularly emphasised the benefits of recycling. TOMORROW’S ADVICE S.A.R.L. 8

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AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS AND TRAINING (CONTINUED) Sorting solid waste methods were also the subject of household and schools campaigns. Garbage separation was encouraged in schools and training was provided on waste products, recycling valuables, daily procedures, and supervised disposal. Additional training was provided on transportation of recyclables to industries, marketing practices, and continuous economic analysis regarding the value of recyclables and their use. SORTING AND COLLECTING WASTE As the community began implementing the solid waste management project, tools needed for the sorting and collection of waste were procured. Sorting bins were distributed to households, schools, and businesses (see Appendix E). A collection truck was rented to collect the separated waste from households. At the start, sorted waste was deposited in Ms. Mokalled‟s home garden. There was no other alternative since no plot of land could be rented as a dumpsite. Once secondary sorting took place, the recyclable products were sold to factories. The Founding Members divided the village into 13 zones. Each member was designated a zone and was in charge of supervising the sorting procedures in it. The process of sorting waste into plastic, glass and metal began in every house in the village. Each house received 3 bins; one for collecting plastic, one for glass and another for metal. Supermarkets were given an additional bin for the organic waste. Accumulated waste is gathered on a monthly basis. The collection truck is accompanied by the woman responsible for the respective neighborhood. The waste is examined and re-sorted if necessary then collected. Each zone requires around 3 to 4 hours and only one zone is done per day. Thus, it takes 13 days to collect the sorted waste throughout the village each month. (see Appendix F) The collected recyclable waste is weighed to quantify the amount of waste generated by the village. Approximately, half a ton of plastic, one ton of metal, and one ton of glass are collected every month. The plastic is sold to a plastic factory in Tyre, and the glass to a factory in Choueifat. Revenues are used to pay for the rented truck and the driver‟s fees. LIFE CONTRIBUTION When the project was launched, Nidaa-Al-Ard was not registered officially. Therefore, it was not subject to specific laws. A bank account at the Bank of Kuwait and the Arab Countries, Nabatiyeh Branch, was set up to receive donations and project funding. LIFE Program funds are deposited in this account and are disbursed with approval of Ms. Zeinab Mokalled. TOMORROW’S ADVICE S.A.R.L. 9

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LIFE CONTRIBUTION (CONTINUED) Ms. Mokalled monitors the project with the assistance of the Founding Members. While involved in all activities, the other members do not participate in the project‟s accounting. A progress report including detailed expenditures of the first US $10,000 donation was submitted to UNDP-LIFE. To date US $ 15,500 of the LIFE grant were received by the NGO. Funds were mainly spent on the purchase of bins, bags, cleaning campaigns, land cleaning, and transportation expenses. The bins and bags are used for sorting and cleaning activities. Other efforts funded by LIFE included meetings with environmental specialists, household visits, and networking workshops with various environmental NGO‟s. Available data on revenues and expenses compared to estimates is provided in table “A”. In addition to financial support and throughout the project, LIFE National Coordinator (NC), Ms. Brigitte Keirouz ,her assistant Ms. Rima Jeha and the National Selection Committee (NSC) played a powerful role by providing guidance, technical assistance, publicity, media coverage, and most of all effective encouragement. ASSOCIATION’S CONTRIBUTION Since the NGO was not officially registered as a legal entity at project inception, it could not participate in public fund raising campaigns. This confined its financial resources to individual donations (aside from the LIFE grant). Donations from Arab Salim citizens amounted to US $ 1,550. The successful efforts of the NGO were noticed by the Ministry of the Environment (“MOE”). As a sign of encouragement and support, the MOE donated 5,000,000 L.L. equivalent to US $ 3,310 as a contribution to the sustainability of the project. Monthly revenues from the sale of recyclable plastic (1/2 ton), metal and glass (each one ton) is estimated to be about US $ 120 while corresponding collection and transportation costs are estimated to exceed US $ 300 a month. Currently, the income generated from the sale of collected waste barely covers the cost of collection and transportation. However, the NGO‟s current legal status allows it to publicly fundraise and generate more income to insure the sustainability of the Project.

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TABLE “A”: REVENUES AND EXPENSES – BUDGET AND ACTUAL MAY 1997 – JULY 1998
BUDGET REVENUES LIFE Funds Upon signature After the 1st progress report After the 2nd progress report After the final report ACTUAL

$

$ Association's Contribution Donations Total EXPENSES LIFE Funds Earth Work 7 Material Strips / $ 50 each Water Strip Fencing Roof and divisions 450 Blue Bins 450 Black Bins Nylon Bags 2 Cleaning campaigns Skip Driver and assistant Car Rent Labeling Bins Brooms Cleaning done by public school students Glass transportation Transportation expenses Miscellaneous expense $

10,000.00 5,500.00 5,000.00 3,000.00 23,500.00

$

10,000.00 5,500.00

$

15,500.00

$ $

5,000.00 28,500.00

$ $

5,158.00 20,658.00

500.00 350.00 25.00 1,250.00 1,000.00 3,600.00 700.00 460.00 450.00 75.00 350.00 100.00 300.00 100.00 100.00 100.00 340.00 200.00 10,000.00 13,500.00 13,500.00 23,500.00

$

500.00 350.00 25.00 1,250.00 1,000.00 3,594.00 700.00 460.00 400.00 75.00 350.00 100.00 300.00 66.00 53.00 80.00 336.00 125.00 9,764.00 3,500.00 3,500.00 13,264.00

$ Cleaning campaigns, Bags, bins etc… $ $

$

$ $

Association Contribution Cleaning, bags, bins etc… $ TOTAL $

5,000.00 5,000.00 28,500.00 $ $

3,834.00 3,834.00 17,098.00

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IMPLEMENTATION PERFORMANCE
Most of the planned activities were implemented as expected. Intensive training and environmental awareness campaigns to both households and students were instrumental in increasing the community‟s participation. Arab Salim‟s men, women, and children were eager to clean their streets and environment. Most of Arab Salim‟s families joined the program and worked together to achieve the goals of the project making their village an example to be followed by neighboring villages. Such a cooperative spirit was witnessed during the awareness meetings and community workshops where problems and solutions were discussed. As a result, Arab Salim is now considered a model village on a national level and an example to be adopted by other communities seeking to improve their living conditions. The community involvement in solving the existing environmental problems was maintained due to the trust the local community has in the founding members (see Appendix G). Most community members showed interest and concern in the social issues facing Arab Salim, particularly those related to environmental protection. Demonstrated by the high attendance rate of community meetings as well as the active participation of households in the project, their enthusiasm ensures the success of the Solid Waste Management project. While the 13 founding members of the Association continue to monitor and control the implementation of the project, many others work diligently behind the scenes to insure its success and sustainability with clear accomplishment of the objectives. Volunteers are welcome at weekly Association meetings to discuss daily problems encountered during implementation of the project. Association members volunteer their homes in hosting the meetings. Monthly meetings are also held. They deal with the overall political and social context of the village, which include conflict resolution, public relations and technical issues, approving Association‟s plans and decisions, and assessing project implementation and progress. At schools, the level of involvement has been remarkable thanks to the cooperation of teachers and students. Approximately 500 student volunteers participated in the project. Although at a slow pace, businessmen are also being mobilised. Such enthusiasm, interest, and participation encouraged the Association to implement a cleaning campaign throughout the village including the entrance of the “Iklim Al-Tuffah” region. This area which was turned into a waste dump over the years was finally cleaned in 1997 by the efforts of the Association.

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IMPLEMENTATION PERFORMANCE (CONTINUED)
Such activity raised the curiosity of neighbouring villages, in particular the village of Jarjoue. Women from Jarjoue started attending Arab Salim‟s awareness meetings. Composting of organic waste is the next phase of the project. Additional education, training of participants, availability of bins, and ongoing monitoring is necessary to complete this activity. However, limited human and financial resources hinder the implementation of this phase. Composting procedures, training, supervision and monitoring of the production cycle are needed, yet not currently available.

ACHIEVEMENTS AND IMPACTS
A chance was given to a dedicated team of women to initiate a solid waste management project in their village. An environmentally healthy village was their aim. They succeeded in mobilizing the local community and sensitizing authorities (local and central) , other NGO‟s and the private sector. The project increased environmental awareness among community members, and spread better practices of solid waste management to neighboring villages. The Association helped reduce the environmental impact caused by dumping indiscriminately, and trained Arab Salim‟s citizens to carefully select and dispose of household products, and to implement routine sorting activities. According to Ms. Mokalled, before the implementation of the project, the environmental awareness at the household level was not existent. Currently, eighty percent (80%) of the population are aware of environmental concerns and are eager to participate in solutions. The project resulted in organized collection and disposal of village waste, generated operations revenue, funded services and bins needed to maximize sorting and collection points. The project is instrumental in the change of attitudes of the population towards waste treatment and disposal. Impressed by overwhelming support for the project and cooperation among community members, the newly elected mayor expressed his intention to support the solid waste management project in Arab Salim. The new village Council members also supported the effort of the Association by allocating a land lot for the collection and separation of garbage, thus allowing Ms. Mokalled to reclaim her garden. Additional efforts are expected from the village Council taking into account its limited human and financial resources. In spite of the efforts, there are still certain issues that have not been solved. The Association is still not able to deal with used batteries and broken porcelain. Their activities are limited to plastic, glass, and metal, which does not solve the solid waste issue in Arab Salim.

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ACHIEVEMENTS AND IMPACTS (CONTINUED)
Moreover, while all work together in good faith, improper sorting by households, schools, and volunteers, remain a great concern. The founding members are busy with monitoring processes to prevent sorting errors from affecting the efforts of the community, and threatening the project. Limited financial resources and minimal revenues generated remain an issue that threatens future sustainability of the project.

LESSONS LEARNED AND RECOMMENDATIONS
SOLIDARITY AND LEADERSHIP Arab Salim‟s community was eager to participate in protecting the environment and to cooperate with various NGO‟s, local authorities, governmental agencies and the private sector. They were lacking environmental awareness and the know-how to solve their problems. Their dedication and patience are to be commended. Their community spirit and collaboration under severe conditions of war are to be admired. Nidaa Al- Ard has proven that the local community in Arab Salim has leadership and solidarity among its members. The implementation of the Solid Waste Management project is instrumental in the change of attitudes of the population towards the environment and specifically waste treatment and disposal. The level of commitment of the Association‟s members is demonstrated by their continuous search for new challenges and further education. MEDIA ATTENTION Successful projects attract media attention. The strong leadership of the Arab Salim women and their cooperative spirit in cleaning their environment generated enthusiasm in the Lebanese society. The participation of the women in TV programs related to environmental issues is credible and appreciated by viewers, since their efforts are evidence of success. LACK OF TECHNICAL SUPPORT Association members played a crucial role in involving the local community in environmental issues. However, some main issues are not yet tackled, such as the proper disposal of used batteries as well as composting. This is due to the shortage in technical support and training. Furthermore, recycling factories are limited and there is no proper waste collection system. Depending on Life‟s technical support may prove inefficient to solve environmental issues at Arab Salim. The opportunity should be seized to seek additional specialized technical support to the Association. TOMORROW’S ADVICE S.A.R.L. 14

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LACK OF FINANCIAL SUPPORT LIFE‟s contribution to the solid waste management project in Arab Salim is the main source of funding. Other donations and revenues cannot cover current costs nor sustain future activities. Therefore, the Association should seek support from the Local authorities and Central Government. It may be time for the village Municipal Council to adopt this project. The Association will continue its efforts in environmental awareness and education. They may also act as advisors to the Council in all environmental issues.

CONTACTS
While several members of the Association have been extremely helpful, Ms. Mokalled was an outstanding role model in dedication to the success of this project and resolution of environmental issues threatening the quality of life of Arab Salim and its neighborhood. She provided us with the requested information as well as with site visits. Members concerned that can be contacted are listed below: Ms. Zeinab Mahmoud Mokalled, President, Teacher Ms. Zeinab Farhat, Housewife Ms. Salwa Mouguenieh, Housewife Ms. Fatmeh Farhat, Housewife Ms. Itaf Youness, Housewife Ms. Hamda Haidar, Housewife Ms. Insaf Youness, Housewife Ms. Fatmeh Mahmoud, Teacher Ms. Aline Haidar, Teacher Ms. Roula Nadar, University Student Ms. Siham Farhat, Kindergarten Teacher Ms. Kadigeh Farhat, Student attending training in computer and accounting Ms. Najat Farhat, Pharmacist

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APPENDIX “A”

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APPENDIX “B”

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APPENDIX “C”

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APPENDIX “D”

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APPENDIX “E”

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APPENDIX “F”

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APPENDIX “G”

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