World embraces CSR, charity to support Lebanon

World embraces CSR, charity to support Lebanon
07 / 08 / 2020
بقلم Marwa Nassar - -

The world has championed corporate social responsibility (CSR) and charity to support Lebanon to overcome the Beirut tragedy. Donations have been pooling up to support the disaster-hit city of Beirut which was rocked by a massive explosion, leaving behind nearly 150 people dead and thousands wounded.

Lebanon has set out a call urging the whole world to assist it to surpass this crisis and several countries have been quick to respond to this call.

Egypt has been among the first countries to extend assistance to Lebanon in line with directives of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi.

Egypt has launched an airlift to send tons of medical and relief aid to Lebanon.

Algeria, Kuwait, Morocco, Jordan and the UAE have also extended medical assistance and field hospitals to support Lebanon.

King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center has also offered aid to Lebanon.

Moreover, Netherlands, France, Italy, Britain, Cyprus, Germany, Canada and Russia have pledged to support Lebanon in this ordeal.

International bodies move up to back Lebanon:

Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Kristalina Georgieva said “In the aftermath of the terrible tragedy in Lebanon, it is time for national unity – to overcome this disaster, as well as to address the deep economic and social crisis that the country continues to face. It is also a time for the international community and the friends of Lebanon to step up to help the country in this moment of urgent need.”

“The IMF is exploring all possible ways to support the people of Lebanon. It is essential to overcome the impasse in the discussions on critical reforms and put in place a meaningful program to turn around the economy and build accountability and trust in the future of the country.”

Adopting the same position, the World Bank has underlined that it stands ready to assess Lebanon’s damage and needs after a devastating Beirut port explosion and will work to help mobilize public and private financing for reconstruction and recovery.

The World Bank said in a statement that it “would be also willing to reprogram existing resources and explore additional financing to support rebuilding lives and livelihoods of people impacted by this disaster.”

USAID earmarks over $15 m in aid:

The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has allocated more than $15 million in humanitarian assistance to aid the people of Lebanon following catastrophic explosions at the Beirut port.

These funds bring the humanitarian aid provided by the American people in Lebanon since September 2019 to a total of $403 million.

These funds will go to bankrolling life-saving medical responses and providing humanitarian assistance to meet the immediate needs of families affected by this tragic disaster, including food aid for 50,000 people for three months.

USAID has also requested the unique capabilities of the US Department of Defense to transport emergency supplies to Lebanon, including enough medical supplies and pharmaceuticals to support up to 60,000 people for three months.

This assistance is in addition to the $41.6 million the United States has already contributed to bolster Lebanon’s efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. This funding helps private health facilities to triage, manage, and refer patients properly; ensures the continuity of essential health care; sponsors risk-communications and community-outreach activities; increases access to water, sanitation, and hygiene, and provides emergency food assistance to refugees and members of vulnerable Lebanese host communities who have lost their livelihoods or are unable to leave their homes.

EU allocates 33 million euros to aid Lebanon:

The European Union (EU) channeled 33 million euros into initial emergency aid for Lebanon and mobilized material resources, including an Italian hospital ship, to help relief efforts in Beirut.

EU leaders wrote in a letter “We… invite you to intensify your support to Lebanon both on the immediate needs, but also with a view to the longer-term reconstruction of the country.”

“In order to ensure efficiency and swift delivery, we stand ready to ensure the synergy of the aid that you and the EU as a whole will provide to Lebanon, through a coordination mechanism that the EU institutions will put in place.”

A donor conference is also planned to mobilize additional funding for reconstruction after an assessment of what is required.

Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce launches fundraising campaign:

The Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce has launched a fundraising campaign to support Lebanon.

The campaign is launched in tandem with partners, including the Lebanese-Brazilian Medical Association, with an aim at raising funds to buy foodstuffs, medical equipment, medicines, and building materials for the immediate relief of the Lebanese people.

The campaign is coordinated with measures of the Brazilian government.

Companies and figures donating funds for backing Lebanon:

MetLife Foundation has announced a commitment of $500,000 to help Lebanon recover and rebuild from the Beirut port explosion.

“We were heartbroken to see the destruction in Beirut, and we want to do everything possible to help the people of Lebanon,” said MetLife President and CEO Michel Khalaf. “This financial support from MetLife Foundation will provide for immediate needs and help put the country on the path to recovery.”

MetLife has operated in Lebanon for more than 65 years and is the country’s leading life insurer.

Also, Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, known online as PewDiePie, has stepped forward to donate $100000 to the Red Cross of Lebanon to help the Arab state in the face of the devastating blast.

PewDiePie is a Swedish YouTuber, comedian, and philanthropist.

Also, Impact Lebanon, a nonprofit organization, has spearheaded a crowdfunding campaign to help organizations on the ground, and is helping to share information about people still missing after the explosion.

The group had raised over $3 million and donated the first $100,000 to the Lebanese Red Cross.

Gates Hospitality has announced its support for Impact Lebanon which seeks to raise about £5,000,000 to provide disaster relief.

Impact Lebanon announced: “We are calling on the world, our friends and our fellow Lebanese in the diaspora to donate to this relief fund.”

Baytna Baytak – a charity that provided free housing to health care workers during the coronavirus pandemic – is now raising funds with Impact Lebanon to shelter those who have been displaced. Over 300,000 people in Beirut were displaced from their homes by the explosion.

American actor George Clooney and his wife Amal – a Lebanese-British human rights lawyer – donated $100,000 to three charitable organizations – the Lebanese Red Cross, Impact Lebanon, and Baytna Baytak – to help homeless people in Beirut.

The door is still open for more countries, companies and institutions to give hand to Lebanon in order to recover from this tragedy as soon as possible.

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