Working with five long-term local partners throughout the country, Christian Aid’s strategy has been to tackle the root causes of poverty and address the structural inequalities faced by the most vulnerable and marginalised in Lebanese society.
Areas of expertise
The Lebanese Civil War resulted in a high number of people with disabilities across Lebanon. The recent arrival of refugees from Syria has increased the number of those in urgent need of care. Christian Aid is working with partners to provide services and therapy to those most in need, and supporting individuals through vocational training to be able to gain employment where possible.
Palestinian refugees first arrived in Lebanon over 60 years ago, but have very limited access to the Lebanese labour market and are often limited to menial work. We work with partners in Lebanon who specifically address these issues, and provide educational and livelihoods opportunities to Palestinians. Since 2012, our partners have also extended services to include Palestinian refugees from Syria, who have found themselves displaced once again.
We are working to provide services to Lebanese, Palestinian and Syrian girls and women who have been affected by gender based violence. Along with psychosocial support and medical referrals, our partner KAFA is working to raise awareness among women of their rights under Lebanese law. Our partners also ensure that all projects target women specifically, to empower them within their communities.
Since 2012, we have worked with partners to provide emergency humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees. This has included providing day-to-day support, such as fuel vouchers in winter and food parcels to the poorest refugees. This is now shifting toward more long-term support for those most in need.
Children take part in a drama class at Association Najdeh's centre in the Palestinian refugee camp of Ein el Helweh.
- Strengthening resilience by working with the most marginalised to decrease their vulnerability to social, economic and environmental risks.
- Building inclusive, cohesive communities that provide equal opportunities and meaningful access for all members of society.
- Providing creative learning and livelihoods opportunities to children and young people in a situation of displacement.
Millions of Syrians have been displaced by the conflict, which started in 2011. Christian Aid’s partners in Lebanon have been successful in providing aid to the most vulnerable among the refugee population in the country.
Association Najdeh, with whom we’ve been partnered for more than 20 years, began its emergency response by providing 1,000 refugee and displaced families with food vouchers, women's hygiene kits, and psychosocial support - helping to heal psychological wounds and rebuild social structures.
Since June 2014, Association Najdeh's ongoing work in the Nahr al Bared refugee camp in Lebanon has provided psychosocial support to Palestinian and Syrian refugees, aiming to improve the wellbeing of 300 girls and boys and 700 caregivers in the camp. In addition to this, they are providing fuel vouchers to 4,440 Palestinian and Syrian refugees to meet needs during the winter period.
The Joint Christian Committee (JCC) has completed a pilot project, scheduled to be expanded in 2017, in southern Lebanon with 185 Palestinian refugees and refugees from Syria to address education shortages by providing children with courses in arithmetic, computer studies, and English, while also providing women with literacy programmes.
The same project is also providing opportunities for men and women by teaching them how to make soap, keep bees, and build agricultural skills.
Through our partner LPHU, we support people with disabilities in a variety of ways. From December 2015 to March 2016, LPHU provided 1,244 people in the Bekaa Valley with fuel vouchers and food kits. Throughout 2015, LPHU’s centres provided direct provision of short-term therapeutic services including speech therapy, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy.
Six-year-old Mohammed Dayoub, affectionately called Hammoudi by his family, was born in Damascus, Syria, with severe physical and mental disabilities. Christian Aid Partner, LPHU, have been able to provide Hammoudi with 10 sessions of physiotherapy, and he is going to receive a TENS machine, which will stimulate his nerves and help his coordination, control and strength.
With our long-term partner Mouvement Social (MSL), we have been working to help disadvantaged children and young people in Lebanon.
Since 2014, Christian Aid has supported MSL’s community centres in Beirut to provide educational support and psychosocial services for Syrian and Lebanese children. The project has been designed to help children catch up with the public school curricula.
As part of the psychosocial support, and to further help young people whose childhoods have been disrupted by war, Christian Aid and MSL ran a project called Beirut friends: Our life in Photos, whereby Syrian and Lebanese children at the centre were given cameras to document their daily lives and enable them to express their feelings and discuss their traumatic experiences.
We are also supporting MSL’s centre in Lebanon’s Roumieh Prison youth wing, which has worked with hundreds of Syrian and Lebanese minors to provide psychosocial support, vocational training and legal assistance. The project also aims to help young people reconcile with their families and communities, to better ensure reintegration into society.
Irish Aid has been providing funding for Christian Aid’s project with KAFA since 2016, supporting Syrian refugees who are survivors of sexual and gender-based violence with services such as access to counselling and legal support.
KAFA is the only organisation in the area that provides holistic services to women survivors of violence.
Workshops on protection and rights for adolescent girls and boys are held at KAFA centres, and women and girls have access to drama, music, dance and yoga sessions which allow them to express their feelings and support them to develop tools to strengthen resilience and positive coping mechanisms.