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MEPI in Libya

In Libya, MEPI activities promote the development of a sustainable civil society, encourage civic participation, and facilitate collaboration between the Libyan government and NGOs. Through a series of small grants designed to address the immediate needs of Libyans as they lead their country through historic changes, MEPI provides opportunities for fledgling civil society organizations to develop and implement community service and advocacy activities in Tripoli, Benghazi, and Western Libya. These grants are aimed to increase the participation of young adults in development and reform and improve services that directly address the social, political, and economic needs of the country.

Featured Highlights

  • A Group photo of the 22 fellows participating in the program in Syracuse
    New Cohort of Leaders for Democracy Fellows

    The seventh cohort of Leaders for Democracy Fellows arrived in the U.S. on March 18, kicking off the six-week long academic portion of their fellowship. The twenty-two Fellows are based at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs where they will complete coursework in democracy studies, conflict resolution, political mobilization, and communication. 

  • A group of women sitting around a table looking at a laptop screen and one man standing talking to them
    Public Opinion Research: A Tool for Rising Women Leaders

    Public opinion research provides political parties and activists’ with insight into constituents’ perceptions and needs, and enhances policymakers’ abilities to respond to voters. Elected officials at all levels of government utilize public opinion data to improve citizens’ access to services and to better engage constituents, which is essential to increasing political participation. 

  • A group photo of the 17 Civic Education Leadership Fellows at the Department of State in Washington
    Civic Education Leaders Visit Washington

    The sixth cohort of the MEPI-funded Civic Education Leadership Fellows (CELF) visited the U.S. Department of State in Washington. The 13 Fellows – all university professors from the Middle East and North Africa – are completing three-month residencies at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University. 

  • three young men showing off their ink-covered fingers after voting
    Libyan Citizens Speak Out!

    On March 8, the MEPI-funded Voter Ownership & Increasing Civic Engagement (VOICE) Project in Libya launched a Citizen Feedback Database, a mobile platform that allows citizens to voice their opinions on critical transition issues via SMS.  

  • A group photo of ALGreenIA team from Algeria
    MENA Students Enter Young Entrepreneurs Competition

    In 2012, over 5400 high school and university students from the Middle East and North Africa competed for spots on the MEPI-supported sixth annual INJAZ Al-Arab Young Entrepreneurs Competition. Seventy five students secured finalist spots for the competition which took place in November 2012 in Doha, Qatar. 

  • Two young women sitting side by side looking at a laptop screen with a third woman between them pointing at the screen explaining
    MEPI Partner Uses New Media to Inform Citizenry

    Through its Social Media|Social Action (SM|SA) project, MEPI partner IREX recently issued a solicitation to provide small grants to youth-serving non-governmental organizations (NGOs) interested in leveraging media tools and approaches to increase the outcomes and impact of their organizations’ activities. 

  • MEPI logo (© State Department)
    MEPI Launches 214 New Projects in 2012

    As of September 30, 2012 (the end of Fiscal Year 2012), MEPI awarded an unprecedented number of grants to international and indigenous organizations working throughout the Middle East and North Africa region. These grants reflect a large increase in civil society activities in MENA, and strong demand for MEPI support, especially in countries that recently experienced democratic transitions. 

  • US Ambassador Chris Stevens with Jason Erb at the launch event
    Launch of Information Technology Public-Private Partnership in Libya

    As part of MEPI’s Information Technology Partnership with Microsoft, and following an earlier event in Benghazi, over 100 representatives from Libyan civil society organizations (CSOs), numerous Libyan government officials, and MEPI implementer Creative Associates gathered in Tripoli on July 17 for the launch of partnership activities in the western part of the country.  

  • Senator Jack Reed speaking behind a podium to a group of students with the American flag in the background
    Students Leaders Learn About Civil Society and Leadership

    A total of 118 undergraduate students from across the Middle East and North Africa participated in the 2012 MEPI Student Leaders Program in Washington, D.C. The program brings civically engaged students with outstanding academic achievements from universities throughout the region to the U.S. to study civil society, democratic participation, and leadership. 

  • general view of a conference attendees
    Libyan Lawyers Prepare for the Elections

    To prepare for the historic elections of July 2012, the American Bar Association (ABA), working in partnership with Libyan bar associations and with MEPI support, trained lawyers and civil society members in the fundamentals of Libyan elections law, such as elections procedure, complaint mechanisms, dispute resolution, campaigning procedures and violations, and the role of lawyers in elections.  

  • a small group of women talking
    MEPI Supports Training for Libyan Candidates and Observers

    In preparation of the elections, MEPI and the National Democratic Institute (NDI) conducted training academies with 75 women candidates and campaign managers in Tripoli and Benghazi. Final results are still coming in, but at least three of the women who participated in the NDI academies have been elected to seats in the General National Congress. 

  • A group photo of LDF fellows with Secretary Clinton sitting in the middle of front row
    Sec. Clinton Affirms Commitment to Supporting Arab Reformers

    MEPI’s 2012 Leaders for Democracy Fellows (LDF) met with Secretary Clinton on May 29th, following their participation in the Civil Society Strategic Dialogue town hall meeting earlier in the month. The Secretary praised the fellows’ reform-oriented activism and work in advancing civil society during an unprecedented time in the Arab world.  

  • Secretary Clinton speaking at the 2012 International Women of Courage Awards ceremony
    MEPI Commemorates International Women’s Day 2012

    On International Women’s Day 2012, MEPI recognizes this critical moment for women’s rights in the MENA region. The Arab Spring has brought profound change to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), change that includes both promise and uncertainty. 

  • crowd of people celebrating
    Libyan Journalists Trained for the Elections through MEPI Grant

    With MEPI support, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting launched the Libyan Elections and Reporting Network in late May 2012. This journalism initiative works with local media outlets and print, TV, and radio journalists in Tripoli, Benghazi, Misrata, as well as areas of the country where ethnic minorities were largely marginalized under Gaddafi.  

  • group of people around a table talking
    MEPI Supports Local Partners to Get Out the Vote

    In preparation for Libya’s elections, MEPI partner Creative Associates sponsored several programs to inform Libyan voters and promote democratic participation. Local partners organized town hall meetings to promote local female candidates, as well as campaigns to inform voters about civic responsibility, the election process, and candidates’ platforms.  

  • Libyan students display ballot ink after voting in Virginia
    Libyan Student Leaders Vote in National Elections for the First Time

    During the recent elections, Libyan students on a MEPI exchange program gathered at the out-of-country voting center in Arlington, VA to vote for the first time in their lives. The MEPI Student Leaders Exchange Program brings civically-engaged undergraduate students from the Middle East and North Africa to six U.S. universities to enhance their leadership skills.  

  • women candidates in training
    MEPI Supports First-time Female Candidates in Libya

    For decades, citizens’ voices were not heard in Libyan politics, and women were especially marginalized in the process. Now, eight months after Muammar Qadhafi’s overthrow, over 600 women are running as candidates in elections for the 200-member Libyan National Public Congress, which will move forward on the drafting of a new constitution.  

  • A group photo with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton
    2011 Leaders for Democracy Fellows Meet with Secretary Clinton

    MEPI’s 2011 Leaders for Democracy Fellows met with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on June 3. The Secretary assured the Fellows of U.S. Government support for democracy and human rights across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and praised them for their dedication and hard work.  

  • U.S. Ambassador Cretz meets with a representative of a civil society organization
    Civil Society Activists Showcase Projects and Ideas to Support Libya’s Future

    The U.S. Embassy in Libya and Tripoli University's Program to Rebuild Libya were proud to organize a Civil Society Showcase on December 13 and 14, 2011 in Tripoli. The event, sponsored by MEPI and the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, was held to highlight the USG’s intention to engage with Libyan civil society in a collaborative and transparent manner.