The humanitarian situation of the people in Lebanon has deteriorated dramatically over the last few years. Due to the destructive explosion in the capital Beirut in August 2020, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and a steadily worsening financial and economic crisis, the country is in a downward spiral. Much of the population lives in poverty. The drastic increase in the price of basic foodstuffs and rising energy prices are leading to a food and energy crisis. Thus, many medical institutions are also affected by the energy shortage, which have limited capacities and is forced to structural triage.      

Those seeking protection in Lebanon are particularly affected by the crisis. For example, since the beginning of the Syrian crisis, some 1.5 million Syrian refugees have been received, as well as hundreds of thousands of registered protection seekers from Ethiopia, Iraq, Sudan, and Palestine. According to UNHCR and UNICEF studies, 99% of Syrian households in Lebanon do not have enough food or money to buy food. Only four out of ten school-age Syrian refugees are included in the education system and at the same time, child labor is increasing dramatically. With the danger of a “lost generation”, an easing or positive development in Lebanon is not to be expected in the coming years.

Azzadi focuses on supporting aid organizations and their work. For example, we are trying to contribute to the simplification of residence permits and statuses by developing strategies. On the one hand, this offers a clearer future to those seeking protection and on the other enables aid organizations etc. to deal with those in need of help in a less bureaucratic manner. From personal experience, we as a team can especially emphasize the mental challenges of an unclear future in a crisis-ridden environment. Providing people with mental assistance and adequate support in their life situations is a cornerstone of our work.