No country in the world is hosting more refugees per capita than Lebanon. A country of 4.4 million people is hosting more than one million Syrian refugees. Tensions are high. The cost of living has skyrocketed. The country has been stretched beyond its capacity to cope with so many vulnerable families.
More than 415,000 refugees have sought shelter in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, many of them living in tent settlements on rented farmland. With the crisis in its fifth year, the level of funding available to support Syrian refugees is shrinking. These families need safe and warm places to live, they need health care, education, safe drinking water, sanitation, and food. Most of them are simply trying to survive until there is peace and they can return home.
WHAT WE DO
Safe Places to Live – Medair provides families with new-arrival shelter kits, repair kits for existing shelters, and specialised kits for the elderly and disabled. We also work to improve the living conditions and safety of the settlements through fire prevention, and we improve living conditions where refugees are renting rooms in substandard or unfinished buildings.
Health Care – Medair provides life-saving health and nutrition services to vulnerable women and children, and improves access to services for gender-based violence. We support and strengthen health clinics and the overall health system, and deliver community health promotion within the refugee settlements.
Mapping – In Lebanon, Medair identifies and maps all of the informal settlements located in Bekaa Valley, and is the lead agency for mapping the rest of the country. This mapping is shared widely with the humanitarian community so that everyone knows about areas of unmet urgent needs. This is important so that isolated families are not easily forgotten.
Water, Sanitation & Hygiene – Medair provides safe drinking water and latrines as well as improves drainage and sanitation in the informal settlements, which means healthier places to live for families. We also provide baby kits with diapers and soap to help families maintain good hygiene for their children.
Cash assistance – Many refugees struggle to afford basic needs, falling into debt or resorting to desperate measures to survive. Medair provides financial assistance to refugees living in poor conditions such as unfinished buildings so they can afford their greatest needs; most often rent, food, or healthcare. This has the benefit of both supporting local markets, and allowing refugees the dignity of choice.