Protecting our forests.


Wildfires are a primary cause of deforestation in Lebanon. Working with both governmental and nongovernmental organizations, the LRI helps train local volunteer firefighters to provide a first response to wildfires in rural areas that are less accessible to government responders. LRI works closely with local partners to develop effective response strategies that can be implemented nationwide. LRI provides technical experts to work with governmental and nongovernmental organizations to improve coordination of responses to wildland fires and to provide the needed early response fire equipment.


A call for proposal was open on September 2015 for NGOs and municipalities to apply for a small grant to develop their own FIREWISE program. The selection of five proposals out of the total submitted was based on the following criteria:

  • The municipality applying should have an existing valuable forest on public land (value could be economic, social, or environmental)
  • The town is located in a high fire risk area
  • Preferably located on one of the three biocorridors (North, West Beqaa and Chouf)
  • Preferably a host community for Syrian refugees
  • Interested/active community
  • NGO partner with previous experience working in participatory planning and with a good success record in implementing donor-funded projects.


  • Supporting local communities to better understand the value of their forest and mitigate the impact of wildfires through a participatory approach to wildfire prevention and response;
  • Coaching NGOs and municipalities in developing and validating their Firewise action plans;
  • Supporting NGOs through ongoing mentoring to implement Firewise activities;
  • Reducing wildfire risk and its negative economic, social and ecological impacts;
  • Increasing awareness about wildfires; and
  • Helping maintain a community-based sustainable forest management.

Wildfire Management Projects & Activities

Planting Day in Bentael

November 21, 2015

Bentael – November 21, 2015 - In the framework of the Firewise program, LRI supported Bentael Nature Reserve committee in organizing a planting activity with the participation of volunteers from the Lebanese University, USEK, and from the local community of Bentael participated in the planting of 250 seedlings in abandoned terraces within Bental Reserve

  • Planting Day in Bentael
  • Planting Day in Bentael
  • Planting Day in Bentael
  • Planting Day in Bentael
  • Planting Day in Bentael

Wildfire Management Trainings & Workshops

Training on Firefighting Techniques for Yahchouch Community Volunteers

April 1st, 2017

On Saturday April 1st, a firefighting training was organized by the USAID-funded Lebanon Reforestation Initiative in collaboration with the Association for Forests, Development and Conservation (AFDC), the Association for the Protection of Jabal Moussa (APJM) and the municipality of Yahchouch. The training included 21 people (13 men and 8 women) from Yahchouch and covered an indoor theoretical and outdoor practical session conducted with the support of the local Civil Defense center. The purpose of the training is to provide community volunteers who usually respond a fire in the first 20 minutes with the needed technical and safety training to ensure better efficiency and less risk. In conjunction with the training, hand firefighting tools were provided to the municipality of Yahchouch and linkages were strengthened with the local Civil defense. This training was the first from a series that will cover all 5 Firewise ® partner towns and towns included in the Social and Environmental Corridors.