Looking Forward for a better future
Our story and goals
The preservation of biodiversity and protected natural sites is one of the major environmental challenges of the 21st century. The sustainable development goals of the UN’s 2030 Agenda are moving in this direction: special attention to climate, clean energy and protection of the planet are key points of the program. The stakes are high, as half of all living species and natural reserves could disappear within a century. Economic actors cannot remain indifferent to such a challenge. This is why Homat al-Hima International was created in 2017. Thanks to a thirty-year collaboration with SPNL, which promotes environmental, social and nature reserve development projects, HHI’s members have acquired a long experience in the field of protecting endangered species and protected sites.
HHI’s main objective is to operate in the nature sector and offer services and goods related to environmental protection and the promotion of natural products. With a special focus on the interaction between people and natural sites, HHI supports the association in its protected sites program called Hima: this model allows local communities to live in harmony with natural resources by enjoying the benefits of sustainable use of natural resources. Currently, 25 Hima have been established in Lebanon, aiming to support the local community with environmentally friendly production methods. HHI’s objective is to export the Hima’s know-how, its products and the derived products of its community, in a sustainable economic model that is concerned with protecting the ecosystem in which we live.
What is Hima ?
Hima means protected area in Arabic; it is a community based approach used for the conservation of sites, species, habitats, and people in order to achieve the sustainable use of natural resources. It originated from more than 1,500 years ago where it was spread along the Arab Peninsula as a “tribal” system of sustainable management of natural resources.
It was applied as a system for organizing, maintaining, regulating, and utilizing natural pasture and rangelands in a way fitting with ecosystems and local practices. Hima management and decisions are made by the local communities themselves.
HHI is reviving the Hima approach in collaboration with municipalities in order to promote the conservation of Important Bird Areas (IBAs) and conserve the sustainable use of natural resources.
Lebanon Hima map
Assad SERHAL the pioneer hero of Himas
“Everything is interlinked, and culture and nature are two sides of the same coin…” explains Mr. Serhal when asked about how he came up with the idea for Hima.
IUCN Marseille September 2021
Founder and Chairman of HHI
Co-founder and former manager of Alshouf Cedar Nature Reserve.
Director General of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon (SPNL), and BirdLife Partner Lebanon.
Birdlife International Global Councillor for the Middle East Region.
IUCN Honorary Membership.
Decorated by minister of environment with the “Silver Lebanese Order of Merit Medal “ offered to Assad by The President of Lebanon (2019).
MIDORI Prize Winner for Biodiversity (2018).
Global Ambassador Commonwealth Entrepreneurs Club (2021).
Nada Sardouk Ghandour
Chief of development
She is the first woman Director General of the Lebanese Ministry of Tourism.
She initiated hundreds of training courses about topics related to Tourism with regional and international institutions.
She was the main contributor and actor in the approbation of the first Paper on Touristic Quality standards in the Arab Tourism Ministers Council of the Arab League in 2004.
She obtained “The Excellency Award for Wise Governance, UNWTO” (in June 2013) among many other awards. She is also Knight of the French National Order of Merite (2015).
General manager and Rural development and ecotourism director
Dynamic corporate team building expert.
Experiential learning and Outdoor education facilitator.
Ecotourism and outdoor activities specialist and trainer.
More than 30 years of experience in organizing and implementing eco-tourism and rural development projects in different countries with ministries, of tourism, environment, local and international Ngo’s, governmental bodies and different private sectors in many countries.
(Lebanon, Mongolia, Nepal, Oman, Sri Lanka,
Tanzania, Turkey, Syria, Vietnam, Zanzibar…)
Empowering people and job creation.
Major General Dr. Mohammad Mostafa Al-Juhani
He led several awareness campaigns to raise the level of conservation of the environment and the marine environment, the most important of them were:
Maritime Safety Campaign.
Prince Abdul Majeed bin Abdulaziz’s campaign to protect the marine environment.
A Jeddah campaign qualifies to protect the environment and raise awareness against waste disposal.
Founder and Chairman of Jeddah Environmental Forum 2008.
One of the founders of Euro-Arab Environment Organization, based in Switzerland, upon an interest of transferring the technology in the fields of environment and renewable energy from Europe to the Arab world.
Nominated as Ambassador at Large for the Free State of Liberland.
He was appointed ambassador to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and advisor to the Minister, Mrs. Cornie Lupag, head of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of the United Nations body responsible for the environment and sustainable development.
Honorary Consul of the Republic of Congo Brazzaville, Saudi Arabia.
Vice-President of the Honorary Consuls Council, Jeddah.
Vice President of the Arab Federation of Honorary Consuls in Morocco.
Member of the World Federation of Consuls in Belgium (FICAC).
President of MMJ WARSITECH GROUP.
Chairman of Climate Change and Environment Committee of the World Federation of Consuls in Belgium.
He is one of the founder of The Pilots Association and Vice President in Saudi Arabia.
Chairman of Environmental Pojects Cooperative Association.
Khaled Abdul Malak
Surgeon during week days and adventurer and explorer in his weekends he has been travelling in Oman and discovering many pristine places hidden in the mountains, wadis and caves almost every week since he established in Oman in 1996.
He worked as a fixer, guide and interpreter for the French TV channel FR3.
And he has written approximately 150 articles in “Oman Observer” and 21 articles in “The Arab Weekly” about his outdoors adventures in Oman
He has presented around 50 episodes of “Oman fi souwar” about the sites explored in Oman. He wrote two books about Oman.
Tarek Roberto Merhi
Tarek is apart from being a nature and sports lover is a businessman involved in several companies and industries dedicated mostly to the construction industry from ceramic tiles to glass and furniture.
He has been in Spain for over 40 years with his companies’ activities spread over Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
Food processing engineer – graduated from France.
35 years international Executive experience in different multinational, mainly Heineken and Coca Cola.
Countries of work: France, Vietnam, Lebanon, Egypt, Congo DRC, Nederland’s.
- Starting Coca cola production in Vietnam,
- Starting Heineken beer production in Egypt.
- Awarded INEX in Heineken for the most sustainable project in 2014, due to the localizing the rice production in DR Congo.
- Introducing the beer barely growing and wine grape in Egypt.
Owner and CEO of ALTERNA company, specialized in food innovation turnkey projects, and vertical farming development in the MEA and GCC.
Dr. Saeed Abdulla Alkhuzai
Ecologist and natural environment expert
Director, Al Reem Environmental Consultation www.alreem.com
- Chairman, Biology Department, University of Bahrain (Sept 88 – Sep 92)
- Dean, College of Science, University of Bahrain (Dec 95 – Nov 97)
- Secretary General, National Committee for Wildlife Protection (94- 95)
- Adjunct Associate Professor, Arabian Gulf University (1998-2008)
- Advisor for Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (Ministry of Culture)
- Natural Heritage Advisor, Bahraini delegation to the World Heritage Committee (2007- 2011)
- Director of Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (2012-2013)
- Advisor of Nature, Qatar National Museum (2013-2016)
Mr. Adnan Budieri has a wide spectrum of knowledge and over 28-year experience in Ecology and Environmental Management, such as:
- Protected areas management;
- Coastal Zone Management;
- Wetland assessment;
- Important Bird Areas Research, Program, Development, and Strategy
- Natural resource management and conservation
- Flora and fauna research and baseline assessments
- Marine Ecosystems and habitat assessments
- Captive breeding programme management
- Ecotourism and sustainable development
- UN Environmental Trio Conventions
Experienced Managing Director with a demonstrated history of more than twenty-five years in Qatar, Canada, Lebanon and the UK in the development of large quarries and soil improvement and many products related to road and building construction material such as aggregates, and special land fill material mixes. Skilled in contract negotiation, strategic planning, marketing strategy and managing large complex infrastructure projects. Working extensively in creating and improving new leadership concepts to leverage teamwork efficiency and concepts to strengthen profitability.
Ali has a Master Degree in civil engineering, also he is a Member at the Chartered institute of arbitrators UK and a member in the (IHE) Institute of Highway Engineering (UK), and recently he joined the (ICE) Institute of Civil Engineers (UK).
Former Mayor of Kayfoun village, implemented and executed many major projects related to nature reserves and sustainable services, as well as Master Planning.
Jamil El Mais
License in business management from Beirut Arab University.
– Owner and general manager of Al Mais Hospital (from 1995 till 2009).
– Freelancer in import-export dates from Saudi Arabia to Lebanon, Middle-East and Europe.
– Partner in Al Ali Foods Company located in Germany.
– Partner and Executive manager of Al Kotouf Al Daniah for Import and Export (Dates)
– Partner in Cedars Fruits Company.
– Owner of Hima Farms in Central Bekaa valley.
Energy and Automation Consultant. Helping communities combating climate change by bridging the Hima concept utilizing AI capabilities
Mo has got more than 28 years of experience in energy efficiency, industrial automation and Artificial Intelligence sectors graduated from CNAM Paris. Mo has held numerous positions in business management, international business development and consulting in MEA, South Asia and North America.
A strategic, CEO/General Manager/Partner in many companies with thirty-seven years of progressive responsibility in a variety of business environments. Graduated from the Lebanese American University in 1983 holding a Bachelor degree in Business Studies Accounting.
Along with all the companies, Souheil took over in 2013 the leadership of United Iron and Steel Company- UISC in Abu Dhabi while being a Partner and CEO. An international company manufacturing galvanized pre-painted steel coils with capacity of 350,000 metric tons per year. Worldwide selling to USA, Canada, Brazil, Europe, GCC, Africa, Asia and Middle East.
Dalia Jawhary Madi
- Proven Project and Program Manager, specializing in Environmental Science and Conservation.
- Possess a Master’s degree, & 15+ years of successful experience in executing strategic initiatives.
- Strengths include Data Analysis, Facilitating Programs, Policy Design, & Regulatory Compliance.
- Significant expertise in Biodiversity, Climate Change, Community Outreach, and Sustainability.
- Track record of developing & delivering robust educational and outreach programs and materials.
- Skilled Leader of Teams, enthusiastically coaching & mentoring Staff to high productivity levels.
- Founder of CommonsConnect an online platform which was created to provide training and capacity building services for local communities in the field of biodiversity conservation and sustainable rural development.
Founder partner of Nasrallah, Skaff & Partners (NSP Legal), a Lebanon headquarter law firm with a presence in the UAE and Iraq. He founded NSP Legal after spending more than 10 years practicing in leading Lebanese law firms specializing in corporate, commercial, mergers & acquisitions, and banking & finance law. He is also acting as a group general counsel for a major multinational company with over 30 base-presence in the Middle East and Africa.
Omar A. S. Al-Saghier
- A 16 years of experience in NGOs and CBOs grant Projects development, funding and monitoring.
- A Thirty years of experiences in environment and wildlife conservation and NGOs.
- Management of conservation project, program and NGO
- Natural resources management, sustainable use and conservation.
- Conduct conservation projects on wetland, including awareness and education
- Over 20 years of experience in Livestock, Rangeland and Forestry research and development in Yemen
- Prepare livestock and rangeland pilot projects’ appraisals based on community participation.
- Conduct Rapid Rural Appraisal for community-based livestock and Rangeland management
- Wildlife & biodiversity conservation, monitoring of Important Birds Areas (IBAs) and key habitats in Yemen
- Rural communities’ organizations and NGOs
- Plan and lead surveys and expeditions for biodiversity in Yemen.
- Fund raising for NGO implemented projects.
Master of law, university of Cambridge (England), L.L.M.
Managing partner Bechara law firm.
Member of the Beirut Bar.
Member of the Beirut Bar Association Admission Committee.
Member of the Scientific Committee of the Beirut Bar Institute.
Consultant World Bank administrative tribunal 2006-2007.
Naja F. Aridi
Over thirty-five years of experience amassing an impeccable record in the field of project development throughout his career in the Middle East and United States. Directed and managed all aspects of major multi-billion dollar programs running the gamut from strategic planning, design, and construction to post-delivery and support. Mr. Aridi is a process and controls oriented professional bringing a unique set of skills and high level of competency to successfully manage large and diverse teams to simultaneously deliver end-to-end multiple high-value projects.
Project involvements included Hospitality and Leisure, Residential, Commercial, Airports, Infrastructure and Public Facilities.
She is the Archaeological Museum Curator at the American University of Beirut (AUB), and an Associate Professor of Practice at the Department of History and Archeology.
She holds a Doctorate in Archaeology, Classical Mediterranean and Near Eastern Civilizations, from Paris 1 La Sorbonne.
Prior to her appointment at AUB, she was a faculty member at the University of Balamand (UOB) (1999-2020), and was appointed Director of the Research Department of Archaeology and Museology (2010-2020). She was also the founder and Chairperson of the Department of Museum Studies and Cultural Heritage Management (2013-2020), and curator of the Ethnographic museum at UOB since its inception, where she played a key role in its launching back in 2009.
She is a member of The International Council of Museums (ICOM) since 1992 and was member of the Executive Committee of ICOM – Lebanon (2011-2020). She is a former Member of the Executive Committee of ICOM – ARAB (2013-2019).
She joined The International Council of Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) since its inception in Lebanon in 2016.
She participated in several archaeological excavations in the Near East since 1992 with the Mission teams of the American University of Beirut Archaeological Museum, Paris 1 La Sorbonne and the Lebanese University, and has been the Principal Investigator for all the archaeological excavations of the University of Balamand.
For the past 10 years, her research’s mission focused on implementing the concept of Hima in the coastal town of Anfeh in her capacity of Anfeh Hima Director, with the help of the SPNL, the Municipality of Anfeh and the local community. The idea of Hima embraces the union of natural and cultural heritage conservation with the preservation of human dignity, identity and wellbeing.
She has been appointed:
– UNESCO Expert; in the framework of the project: Emergency Safeguarding of the Syrian Cultural Heritage, since 09/2014.
– Advisor to the former Lebanese Minister of Culture [05/2010 – 09 /2010] as a member of the Executive Committee for the Management of Beirut Archaeological Excavations.
– Advisor to the Lebanese Minister of Culture [07/2014 – 11/2014] as member of the Committee for re-writing the Lebanese Law of Antiquities.
President of the Palm Island Natural Reserve Committee – Northern Lebanon
Chief of the engineering department in Mina (Tripoli) municipality since 1994
Head of the Environment Committee at the federation of the Arab Engineer
Former treasurer of Tripoli federation of engineer
He has written several books and publications, including about nature reserves in the Arab world and a landscape study of Palm Island protected area commissioned by Global Environment Facility (GEF)
Our experts are specialized in different fields and have enriched and developed their know-how by years of rigorous work and various experiences.
We listen very carefully to our client’s needs in order to provide customized services adapted to each different reality and country.
03. Environmentally friendly
We care for nature and we believe that reconciling business with environmental care is possible.
Why we are different ?
- Because we give meaning to what we do.
- Because we believe that a solidary and eco responsible business is possible.
- Because we know that green products and services are the future for everyone.
- Because our actions and our products help raise collective awareness.