ghada hassen jurdi LDC lebanon

Shabeb & Sabaya

Lebanese D Convention (LDC) – Shabeb & Sabaya – is an NGO based in Choueifat, in the District of Aley.

Formed in 2016 by Ghada Hassan Jurdi, it started as a small seed – a gathering of about 45 family and friends – germinating into an annual international event, attracting more than 1500 participants from around the globe.

LDC aims to unite and bring together Druze people from around the world to meet every year in Lebanon, strengthen their international ties, revive old friendships and make new acquaintances.

Although there are many Druze conventions held annually around the world – from the US and Canada, to Australia, Venezuela and Brazil – there was previously no event within Lebanon.

The Founder & President of LDC, Ghada Hassan Jurdi, was inspired to promote togetherness in the Druze community from within Lebanon, and set about organising the first event.

Thinking Big

Ghada Hassan was born in Achrafieh, Beirut. In 1974, she moved to Venezuela with her husband, Nabil Jurdi. In 1995, they returned to Lebanon, settling in Choueifat. Her husband is her strongest supporter, and an active participant in the organisation’s activities.
Although she had no previous experience organising such events, she began by inviting a small gathering of family and friends to meet for lunch at the Cherry Blossom Hotel in Bhamdoun, in August 2016.

That was followed in December of the same year with another event at the Phoenicia Hotel in Beirut. Although small, it was larger than she ever expected – word spread, with many last-minute requests to attend the function.
Unexpectedly, much of the interest came from young adults – “We were surprised – but delighted – that younger people were showing interest, and we were happy to be able to offer an opportunity for bringing people together. It gave us the motivation to think bigger.”
Ghada Hassan Jurdi realised the potential for a much more ambitious project – far greater than she had initially anticipated.

First Conference

With four other members – Souhad Abdul Khalek Assaf (Vice President), Najat Souki Wehbi (Treasurer), Ghada Akl Rayess (Secretary) and Fadi Jurdi (PR) – she formed the LDC and began planning the first official Conference.

“We wanted to expand and start a Convention within Lebanon for Druze people from all over the world,” she said.

Through contact with other Druze organisations around the world, she was able to spread the word to the international community.

That first official Conference took place at the Golden Lili Resort in Aley, in August 2017, and was attended by almost 1000 people from within Lebanon and many other countries.
A smaller event – an end-of-year celebration – was held at L’Heritage Resort in Souk el Gharb in December of that year.

lebanese druze convention LDC board members
convention lebanese druze

Among the Pines

In 2018, the Conference hosted more than 1000 international guests at PineLand, in Deir el Harf.
The first day of the event included a Welcome Lunch and Singles Night, Day Two included a touristic tour of Anjar, followed by a Bonfire and Cowboy Night.
The final day featured Hiking, Yoga and Meditation, a Religious Seminar by Sheikh Dr. Sami Abo El Mona, followed by a Gala Dinner.

The end-of-year celebration took place at the Mate Factory in Aley, in December 2018.

"We wanted to expand and start a Convention within Lebanon for Druze people from all over the world."

Ghada Hassan Jurdi – Lebanese Druze Convention President

ghada hassen jurdi LDC

Collective Wedding

In 2019, the Convention met at La Siesta Resort at Khalde, with over 1500 guests.
The first day of the event included Registration and a Welcome Lunch, followed by Sunset Yoga and Singles Night on the beach.
The next day saw 8 busloads of participants take a touristic trip to Arnaoon Village, near Batroun, followed by a Karaoke Night.
The final day of the Conference featured the Gala Dinner, attended by almost 1000.

In 2019, the Conference expanded to include the first ever “collective wedding” for Druze.
The wedding included eight couples and was sponsored by the LDC.
“Some couples take out loans to cover the costs of their weddings – it can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars. We wanted to minimise the stress and expense, so that young couples can focus on their homes and future families,” said Mrs Hassan Jurdi.
Although weddings are not the main goal of the LDC, the event was popular and has been requested for the future.

The future aims of the LDC include the establishment in Lebanon of a permanent centre for Druze people from all over the world, for meetings, seminars, conferences, etc., and the continuation of the annual Lebanese Druze Convention in Lebanon.

LDC wedding 2019 lebanon
wedding lebanese druze convention 2019
LDC wedding 2019
wedding 2019 LDC lebanon
Heather & Sami Eljurdi
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