Project profile — Supporting Women Cooperatives and Associations in the Agro-Food Sector


FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (41301)
2018-05-03 - 2024-03-31
Global Affairs Canada
EGM Europe, Arctic, Middle East and Magh

Country / region 

• Lebanon (100.00%)


• Secondary Education: Vocational training (11330) (35.00%)
• Government And Civil Society, General: Women's rights organisations and movements, and government institutions (15170) (5.00%)
• Business And Other Services: Business support services and institutions (25010) (23.00%)
• Agriculture: Agricultural co-operatives (31194) (37.00%)

Policy marker 

• Gender equality (principal objective)
• Environmental sustainability (cross-cutting) (not targeted)
• Participatory development and good governance (significant objective)
• Trade development (significant objective)
• Biodiversity (not targeted)
• Climate change mitigation (not targeted)
• Climate Change Adaptation (not targeted)
• Urban issues (not targeted)
• Desertification (not targeted)
• Children's issues (not targeted)
• Youth Issues (not targeted)
• Disaster Risk Reduction(DRR) (not targeted)
• Disability (not targeted)
• Indigenous Issues (not targeted)
• Nutrition (not targeted)
• ICT as a tool for development (not targeted)


This project aims to improve the livelihoods of rural Lebanese and Syrian refugee women and contributes to their empowerment through training in business management, communication skills and legal issues related to women’s rights. This project supports women-led cooperatives and associations to establish sustainable income-generating enterprises. It supports an enabling environment for women by reinforcing the capacity of relevant institutions and organisations to provide more equitable services. It also provides training to Ministry of Agriculture staff in mainstreaming gender equality in the development of policies and strategies in the agricultural sector. It empowers women in achieving equal participation in Lebanon’s economy, and improves their access to and control over resources. Project activities include: (1) increasing awareness of the rights and roles of women at the family and community levels, and this among all levels of society in targeted rural areas; (2) increasing the capacity of the General Directorate of Cooperatives (GDC) to improve their management information system for the registration and monitoring of cooperatives, including a data tracking system based on sex disaggregated data; (3) increasing the awareness of the need for more gender-responsive services from government institutions and non-governmental organizations at national and local levels; (4) increasing the knowledge in the development of business plans and technical aspects of small-scale agri-food enterprise development for targeted rural women cooperatives/associations; and (5) increasing the capacity of women cooperatives/associations to improve productivity in local agro-food business ventures. .

Expected results 

The expected outcomes for this project include: (1) improved enabling social and cultural environment for rural women’s economic empowerment is created; and (2) increased participation of women cooperatives/associations in local economies to establish and/or expand sustainable agri-food income-generating enterprises.

Results achieved 

Results achieved as of December 2022 include: (1) conducted a far-reaching gender equality campaign to 1,320 Lebanese and Syrian men and women (621 Lebanese women and 699 Syrian women), resulting in 300 out of 1,000 rural families (30% target) changing their perception towards including women in decision-making and employment; (2) strengthened the capacity of the Ministry of Agriculture by training 45 staff members (35 women, 15 men) on gender mainstreaming, conducting a gender assessment of the agri-food sector in Lebanon and updating the Ministry’s Management Information System to capture national cooperative data; and (3) provided cooperative business school training to a total of 675 Lebanese participants (631 women and 44 men) from 257 cooperatives and informal associations, out of which they selected 144 groups to receive up to US$10,000 to start or expand their agri-food businesses.

Budget and spending 

Original budget $0
Planned disbursement $0
Country percentages by sector
Type of finance Aid grant excluding debt reorganisation
Collaboration type Bilateral
Type of aid Project-type interventions
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