Lebanon: Dreaming of a safe life
04 April 2018
Ali examines his baby’s burned crib in in his tent in the Bekaa Valley, Lebanon
The fire started around nine in the evening. It was a dark and cold night in November. Ali and his family were in their tent in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley when a mass of electric wires behind an old television set surged and burst into flames. “It all happened very fast,” said Ali.
“I was so lucky to get my family out of the tent before anyone got hurt,” said Ali. “Thank God for that.”
Winters get very cold in the Bekaa Valley. There is a high risk of fire for families like Ali’s who live in tents. Most Syrian refugees depend on stoves to keep themselves warm, which is risky because their tents are made mainly of wood and vinyl.
To help mitigate the risk, Medair distributes fire extinguishers in the informal settlements and provides fire-safety training sessions to the people living there.
“With the help of my neighbours, we found 20 fire extinguishers in our settlement and we were able to extinguish the fire quickly using the guidance provided by the Medair staff,” said Ali. Their quick reaction prevented the fire from spreading to other tents or causing any casualties.
Medair’s Lebanon team responded quickly to the fire emergency. Just two days after the fire, we provided Ali with two large shelter kits so he could rebuild his family’s tent before the winter came.
One kit included wood, nails, and vinyl sheets, while the other kit included a kitchen set, jerry cans, blankets, mattresses, and a stove.
“I want to thank Medair for their fast response,” said Ali when the Medair truck arrived. “I will be able to build and replace my tent in one week.”
In Lebanon, Medair provides Syrian refugees like Ali and his family with shelter, WASH, and health services to help them survive the crisis. Your monthly gifts make this crucial work possible. Please join the journey today.
Medair’s work in Lebanon is made possible with support from Swiss Solidarity, EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid, Global Affairs Canada, Gebauer Foundation (CH), UN High Commissioner for Refugees, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, EU Madad Fund and generous private donors.
This content was produced with resources gathered by Medair field and headquarters staff. The views expressed herein are those solely of Medair and should not be taken, in any way, to reflect the official opinion of any other organisation.