Home>September 2020>Together, we stand in solidarity with Beirut

Together, we stand in solidarity with Beirut

In early August, two deadly explosions decimated the port and nearby streets of Beirut. The explosions killed more than 170 people, wounded 6,000 and left nearly 300,000 people homeless.

On the same day of the explosions, the main hospital in Beirut, treating the city’s coronavirus patients, announced it was on the verge of reaching full capacity.  

Then just days after the explosions, Beirut saw record daily highs of new coronavirus cases – placing even more pressure on the fragile health system.

For Lebanon, the explosions and the COVID-19 pandemic have occurred during a time of social and political turmoil, making recovery efforts even more challenging.

Situated just two kilometres from the explosion site, several Jesuit offices were badly damaged with blown-out windows, shattered walls and ceilings.  Fortunately, there were no Jesuits or staff seriously injured in the blast enabling them to respond to the emergency.

Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Lebanon was already providing COVID-19 relief through food and hygiene supplies as well as assistance to vulnerable families.

After the explosions, JRS expanded its efforts to support blast-affected families in the Bourj Hammoud and Karantina – two neighbourhoods that were badly damaged and where JRS has been working for the past few years.

The JRS ‘Beirut Blast Emergency Response’ program will target 500 families or 2,500 people who have been most affected by the explosion.  Over the next four months, JRS will provide them with emergency shelter assistance, food, mental health and psychosocial support.

If you’d like to support JRS Lebanon in their relief efforts, you can donate here.

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