Author Archives: Lauren Holtmeier

The upcycling trend begins to take hold in Lebanon

The upcycling trend begins to take hold in Lebanon

“From trash to treasure” is the mantra often cited by upcyclers, or those who use would-be waste to create something new. Upcycling endeavors in Lebanon have multiplied in the last two years with entrepreneurs using materials such as plastic bags, old newspapers and magazines, and cloth to make products such as jewelry, bags, and decorations.

Crisis-struck Venezuelans turning to Lebanon

Venezuela teeters on the brink of further deterioration from years of political and economic instability. With self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guiado on one side standing in opposition to current president Nicolas Maduro, the county’s future is uncertain. As with most modern conflicts, what happens in Venezuela has global implications, and this Latin American crisis may

Traditional handicrafts in Lebanon

Carpets, cutlery, glass, soap, furniture—these traditional Lebanese crafts have a valued place in the country’s—and the region’s—history. Industrial development in the last half of the 20th century has, inevitably, affected Lebanon’s traditional artisans. One the one hand, it has driven demand down for artisanal crafts that are usually more expensive than mass-produced imports. On the

Redefining roles

Fleeing conflict, leaving one’s home, and settling in a strange—and often unwelcoming—environment is challenging. For female refugees these challenges can be compounded, as many experience a shift in their accustomed gender roles. Many women in Syria played the role of housewife, but in Lebanon they must assume a new role—that of breadwinner.  The 2018 Vulnerability