HI’s work in Lebanon aims to increase the involvement of people with disabilities and vulnerable people in community life, both physically and in terms of professional, cultural and social inclusion. As a result of the humanitarian crisis caused by the conflict in Syria, HI has also rolled out emergency projects aimed at the affected population groups (refugees and host populations).
Ahlam, a young Syrian amputee, Lebanon - HI | © Elias Saade / HI
Actions in process
HI started work in Lebanon in 1992 in the Palestinian refugee camps and clusters (rehabilitation and promoting the rights of people with disabilities, and mental health work). The association has since provided emergency assistance in the crisis situations that have rocked the country and region. Since 2011, HI has been supporting Syrian refugees and the Lebanese community affected by the war in Syria.
In North Lebanon and the Bekaa Valley, HI ensures that people with disabilities receive appropriate emergency care such as rehabilitation, assistive devices (prostheses and orthotics) and psychosocial support.
HI is also carrying out mine clearance operations in the north of the country following Lebanese civil war.
Working with education actors and as well protection actors, HI is looking at improving the inclusion of children with disability into learning program as well as moving toward an inclusive humanitarian response in Lebanon.
Following Beirut Port Blast on August 4th 2020, HI is working with local civil society to ensure victims of the explosion have access to comprehensive rehabilitation services as well as psychosocial activities.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, HI has continued to help the world’s most vulnerable people. We have adapted our interventions in more than 45 countries.
Situation of the country
Lebanon has been deeply affected by an economic crisis started in late 2019. This crisis has been aggravated by the COVID pandemic. More than 50% of the population is under the poverty line.
Meanwhile, the country continues to welcome 1 million refugees who have fled the 10-year war in Syria. Lebanon is also home to a large community of Palestinian refugees, mainly living in informal camps. These refugees find it particularly difficult to access basic services like health and education. Besides, people with disabilities, particularly in rural and isolated areas, can find it hard to access these services. These populations are becoming increasingly vulnerable over time. Refuges very often require emergency assistance, primarily to treat their physical and psychological injuries.
Finally, as a result of several decades of intermittent conflict and despite 15 years of clearance efforts, the population continues to be affected by mines and explosive remnants of war (ERW), with some victims requiring life-long assistance to live with their injuries.
Number of HI staff members: 90
Date the programme opened: 1992