Working from the ground up

Monday morning, organize evaluations from weekend activities, afternoon call with centres for next weekend’s activity, evening attend EU Parliament conference on protecting child refugees in the Middle East.
Thursday morning, workshop at PICUM on fundraising, Afternoon, get updates from ESL officers in Saida and Beirut, evening testing activity materials.
Saturday afternoon, pick up snacks and materials, coordinate volunteer participation, facilitate workshop, write post-activity report.

While it’s perhaps uncommon for an organization based in Brussels, at SB OverSeas we keep the focus of our work as close to the ground as possible—both in Brussels and Lebanon. A normal day of all SB workers is a combination between desk and hands on work.

We believe that is the best way—if not the only way—to properly do our work in order to have a real positive impact. For this reason, our Brussels HQ team joined our teams in Lebanon during July and August, and during this time both teams will have the opportunity to compare ideas and experiences face-to-face and plan for a future in which we can continue Giving Hope to more people in need.

For a humanitarian NGO, daily work goes beyond engaging with the immediate community: they play and important role in influencing the agenda for policy-makers and provide them vital information about the conditions on the ground. This is especially true at SB: our HQ office is in Brussels, the heart of the EU, and therefore we have the possibility to have a direct contact with EU policies. By keeping our ear to the ground in Brussels and Lebanon, we ensure that our contributions remain true to reality.

In Beirut, while in the morning we may have meetings and emails, in the afternoon we can take an hour or two to walk right across the way to the Bukra Alha centre and help a volunteer test their activity or participate in one of the kindergarten classes.

Being on the ground not only means we are a first-hand source of information for the rest of the world, but also that we are directly accountable to the community which is, at the end of the day, to whom we work for. We have forged such a relationship of trust with the youth and the centers in Brussels and the refugees that attend our classes and workshops, as well as the community around the centers in Lebanon. We have the chance to listen to them, their needs and take feedback to improve our work.

To learn more about our work in Brussels and Lebanon visit our website