Haitham Ahmad Fahs was preparing to fish for dinner when he heard the boom of the Aug. 4 port explosion. He returned to his home in the Khandaq area of Beirut to find the windows blown out, doors blown out of the walls and significant electrical damage. His nephew was killed in the explosion, closer in to the port itself. (Photo by Joao Sousa)

Beirut program exceeds targets in returning families home

  • Matt Hackworth
  • Jan 7, 2021

Survivors of the blast that drove thousands of Beirut residents from their homes in August found shelter wherever and however they could. The most fortunate had a friend or relative who would welcome them. Many did not. Some stayed in their homes, wind sweeping through where windows and doors once provided protection. Others resorted to tents or plastic sheeting, marking the time until the seasons would change, when Beirut's cold and rainy winter would arrive.

Many were people of meager means, struggling to survive under Lebanon's political and economic turmoil.

Yet thanks to incredible partnership from the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Makhzoumi Foundation and Lutheran World Relief, many families have been able to return to repaired homes far more quickly than once envisioned.

With support from USAID BHA, Makhzoumi Foundation and LWR were able to exceed their target for fixing homes.

With support from USAID BHA, Makhzoumi Foundation and LWR were able to exceed their target for fixing homes.

By focusing on fairly simple and straightforward repairs, such as replacing windows and doors, more than 1,000 households have been repaired to habitable condition. The program targeted low and middle-income households, for which cost was a barrier to making repairs.

The original goal was to return more than 700 households to normalcy.

"We were able to exceed our goals because of our incredible partnership, and the commitment of the families we served to return home," Lutheran World Relief Senior Regional Director, Nicole Hark said. "Our contractors worked tirelessly to see the families we serve safe in their homes."

CREATED BY
Matt Hackworth, Jan 7, 2021 email

 

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