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ARM & MCC's Quarterly Newsletter
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Hello everyone! Hope the new year is treating you well so far. Here are our winter updates, please follow the links (or get in touch) to know more. We’d love to hear from you!
Domestic Workers in Lebanon fight for Right to Join Union
Let’s start with some good news: Domestic workers in Lebanon are successfully building up their collective power! Lebanon could become the first Arab state to allow migrant domestic workers into a labour union. The founding Congress of the domestic workers' union in Lebanon will be held this Sunday.
This step represents an important milestone towards the recognition of domestic work as real and productive work that should be governed by all labour laws and legislations. This union will be representing the interests of domestic workers and defending their basic human and labour rights, 
in a context of perpetual and institutionalized rights violation. Through this union, domestic workers affirm that they are part of the labour force in Lebanon and will join forces with other workers to achieve basic rights and social justice.
Read more about this here and here.

ARM will be hosting an Info Session with some of the people behind this effort in February. Check our page in the next week to find out all the details.
Oppressive Kafala System Now Applies to Syrians
The discriminatory and extremely controversial Kafala system, which human rights defenders have been fighting against for years, has just increased its scope to include Syrians in Lebanon. To enter the country they will now require one of six visa types, most of which are for an extremely short duration. Not a great situation when you’re escaping a war. This great piece explains the details of this measure, and argues that "the new visa system was designed to compartmentalise Syrian nationals based on class; if you have money and assets you are allowed to stay, and if you are poor you are unwelcome".
ARM is co-organising a protest TOMORROW to speak out against this inhumane new General Security Measure. 
ARM’s New Year’s Resolution!
This year, our new year’s resolution to give lots of anti-racism sessions in schools! These sessions will include lessons, games, research assignments and homework designed to sensitize children to the problematic views many hold toward migrant domestic workers (and foreigners in general) and to help them understand the situation from various perspectives.
Help us connect with your school, whether you're a teacher, student, or even if you graduated years ago but are still in touch with your old school. 
Donate to Syrian Refugees
Donate to help alleviate the suffering of Syrian Refugees. In this harsh winter weather, it’s undeniable that the worst off among us are those without proper shelter. With a small donation (in cash or in kind), you could help someone stay warm through the winter. Here is an article rounding up some of the great organisations you could donate to.
Xenophobic Ad Campaign by Impact BBDO and Pikasso
Have you seen this campaign littering the streets of Beirut?

 
We find it crass, offensive, and irresponsible, as it feeds resentment towards foreigners in Lebanon, and let’s face it, especially Syrians. This is how most people we’ve encountered have understood it. To respond to this campaign, we’ve come up with our own! Here's the first of the series. The rest will be shared on our page in the coming week.
 
Updates from the Migrant Community Center
It’s been a busy few months at MCC, with fun events every week, and brand new classes beginning! Here are a few highlights. You can like the MCC Facebook page to stay posted (and join us) on future events!
Ethiopian, Indian, Sri Lankan, and Liberian Dinner Nights!

We've had 5 lovely dinner nights hosted by MCC since November. They were great opportunities for guests to discover delicious cuisines (and music!) from Asian and African countries, and for the cooks to share a piece of their country’s culture and generate some extra income. We will be organizing Dinner Nights regularly, featuring foods from lots of different countries. They are fun, affordable, and open to everyone, so why not join us next time!
Migrant Communities Market

On Sunday December 21st, some MCC members showcased their handmade crafts, sold delicious foods, and danced to the tunes of their countries’ music, all at Nasawiya Cafe in Mar Mikhael! Nine countries were represented (Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Nepal, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, and Sudan). The goods on sale included Liberian salt cookies, Ethiopian coffee, Kenyan body lotions, folkloric clothing, Nigerian meat pies, bracelets, and more! Stay tuned for the next one.
Day Trip to Chouf

MCC members and their friends enjoyed a full day in the Chouf area on Sunday November 16th. We went for a hike, visited Moussa Castle, and then explored the gorgeous Cedar reserve before heading back to Beirut for dinner.
MCC's Annual End of Year Event

On December 28th, MCC had its annual end-of-year party where more than 80 people celebrated Christmas, New Year, and MCC Gemmayze's first anniversary (MCC was located in Nabaa for its first 2 years). It was a happy gathering full of music, delicious food, children's activities, face painting, dancing, and lots of cake! Many people brought food to share, and we all got to taste each other’s dishes! Santa came to see the children, bearing tasty treats. 
New MCC Schedule
(opening hours in green)
All the classes mentioned are free of charge for migrant workers, and taught by our amazing volunteers!
NB1: Computer Classes start on February 8th. Places are limited! Email us to book your seat.
NB2: Computer and Guitar class schedules are still tentative.
Support MCC!

We are currently preparing an online fundraising campaign - we will share it once it's ready. In the meantime, if you'd like to support MCC, here's what you can do!
Join us!
 
We're always looking for new volunteers to join MCC! Here are our most urgent needs:
  • computer class teacher
  • curriculum developer for English classes
  • dance, sports, acting, or music teachers
  • arts, crafts, knitting teachers
  • photographer/videographer for short-term projects
  • website creator to help us make MCC a website
  • if there are any other skills you’d like to share or teach, let us know!
Donate to MCC

If you’d like to help MCC but don’t have any time to volunteer, why not donate an item you no longer need? Here is our wishlist! (click to see full-size)
Copyright © 2015 Anti-Racism Movement, All rights reserved.


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