The last two months have seen high winds and heavy rains across Lebanon. Unfortunately, this has caused a huge amount of devastation and further displacement to many marginalized refugee communities. According to UNHCR, more than 360 areas, hosting 11,300 refugees, have been affected, with a number of these being completely flooded. At least 600 Syrian refugees in the Bekaa have been forced to relocate, and one young Syrian girl lost her life in the floods. A number of wonderful NGOs in Lebanon have come together to support those affected, including ULYP.
In the last newsletter, we announced our Caring Coats Campaign, asking for donations of warm clothing and blankets. Thanks to your kind donations, ULYP was able to deliver these essential winter items to those refugees affected by the weather. Your items were delivered to camps and gatherings in the Bekaa, an elderly center in Naher El Bared camp in the North, and a pre-school in Ein El Hilweh camp, Saida. This could not have been possible without your generous support, and the support of First National Bank (FNB) and other partners. The American Community School, Beirut, is still collecting winter clothes and blankets so please continue to donate everything you can, to help those in need. When individuals, communities and organizations work together, we really can make a huge difference to people’s lives here in Lebanon.
Our first ever winter clothes drive, the Caring Coats Campaign, was a real success! Thanks to many donors and helpers we collected 41 boxes of warm winter clothing which have been distributed to Syrian refugees in the Bekaa.
In November we asked our friends and supporters to spread the warmth to underprivileged families by cleaning out their closets and bringing their spare warm clothes to our collection stations. The response to the campaign was amazing and we were able to collect:
15 boxes of sweaters
8 boxes of pants
9 boxes of coats
1 box of baby clothes
2 boxes of shoes
2 box of hats and scarves
3 boxes of bags
This was only possible with the helpful hands of Dany’s, T-marboutah, Halak Optics, Houri Hearing, The Garderie, LAU, ACS and FNB, all functioning as collection stations. We are also very grateful to the Palestinian Cultural Club at LAU who set up their own drive for us, and to our 12 enthusiastic volunteers who helped to sort out the clothes.
In January, a second clothes campaign, Give Warmth, was set up in collaboration with Tara Hermez. This was in response to the storm Zina, which hit Lebanon bringing inches of snow and leaving many families freezing in the harsh conditions. ULYP collected approximately 100 more boxes of clothes and blankets, which were also sent to families in the Bekaa for distribution by two local NGOs, SAWA for Development and Aid, and URDA.
A big special thank you to everyone who donated their clothes or time to help make these campaigns happen and keep families in need warm!
So far the Caring Coats Campaign has been a great success! We’ve already received a lot of winter clothing for our underprivileged children, and we would like to thank you for cleaning out your closets and thinking of the families in the cold.
But, we still need more! That’s why we have decided to extend the campaign until 7th December. Please spread the word and let us know how we can help you help the families in need before the winter really starts.