Beirut explosions: How to help victims of disaster in Lebanon

At least 100 people have died and 4,000 others have been injured following massive explosions in Beirut on Tuesday 4 August

Sabrina Barr
Friday 07 August 2020 13:05 BST
Shell shocked Beirut wakes up to widespread damage

On Tuesday 4 August, Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, was left devastated by massive explosions at the city’s port.

At least 100 people are currently known to have died and 4,000 people have been left injured from the blasts, which caused damage to streets within a radius of several kilometres.

According to George Kettaneh, the head of the Lebanese Red Cross, there are still victims trapped under the rubble.

Organisations including the Lebanese Red Cross, Beit el Baraka and Donner Sang Compter have been providing support for victims of the explosions, evacuating people from the area, setting up blood drives and helping to house families whose homes have been wrecked.

Here are several organisations and initiatives that you can donate towards to help victims of the Beirut explosions:

Lebanese Red Cross

The Lebanese Red Cross is the country’s main provider of ambulances, with more than 300 ambulances and 3,000 emergency medical technicians on its staff.

Following the explosions at the port in Beirut, the Lebanese Red Cross shared regular updates on its social media channels regarding the dispatch of its emergency medical teams to rescue and evacuate victims in the area.

The organisation made an urgent plea for blood donations at the Lebanese Red Cross blood transfusion centres across the country, which are located at Tripoli, Jounieh, Antelias, Spears and Zahle, Saida and Nabatieh, in addition to setting up triage and first aid stations to treat victims with non-critical injuries.

The Lebanese Red Cross also warned members of the public not to donate to any third parties fundraising under its name, stating that these fundraisers are “not authorised and not legal”.

On the website you can donate in American dollars or in Lebanese pounds, but donors are being encouraged not to donate in the local currency because of the economic situation in the country weakening its value.

To donate, click here.

The British Red Cross has also set up an emergency appeal to raise money for aid in Beirut.

The organisation says it is “working closely with the Lebanese Red Cross” to help save lives and assist people in recovery.

To donate, click here.

Impact Lebanon disaster relief fund

Impact Lebanon, a non-profit organisation that describes itself as a “social incubator for driven Lebanese around the world” has set up a fundraising page on JustGiving to raise money for disaster relief in Beirut.

With a target of raising £5m, the organisation states that it is co-ordinating with non-governmental organisations that require aid in the aftermath of the explosions in the capital of Lebanon.

Impact Lebanon says it will be “diligent” with the donations that are sent to NGOs and will provide further information on the organisations that are receiving money from the fundraiser “as soon as possible”.

To donate, click here.

Beit el Baraka

Beit el Baraka is a non-profit organisation based in Beirut that offers help to families and elderly people in Lebanon who are struggling with the cost of living.

Following the explosions at Beirut port, the organisation stated on its Instagram Story that it is going to help fix the homes of families that were “severely damaged” as a result of the blasts.

Beit el Baraka said that it would provide those in need with emergency shelter relief, by offering temporary accommodation and necessities such as food; help to rehabilitate homes that have been damaged and offer assistance to families as they navigate their current circumstances.

To donate, click here.

Donner Sang Compter

Donner Sang Compter, an organisation founded a decade ago, promotes blood donation in Lebanon, setting up blood drives and offering a call centre that is available to contact 24/7.

Following the explosions in Beirut, the organisation stated on Twitter that all of its blood banks “were overcrowded and pumping hope”.

“Demands are all fulfilled for tonight,” Donner Sang Compter said on Tuesday 4 August. “Let’s stay alert for the coming few days.”

The website for the organisation provides information on how people can donate blood or offer assistance as a volunteer.

To donate, click here.

Beirut Blast Victims Relief Fund

A fundraiser titled the “Beirut Blast Victims Relief Fund“ has been set up on GoFundMe to help raise money that will be transferred to “reputable” non-governmental organisations to help victims of the Beirut explosions.

The relief fund has been set up by Lucas Labelle, a Gabelli School of Business graduate whose mother, Sana Labelle, is vice president of NGO Fard, and Camila Magnani, a New York University student.

Imane Nasreddine, founder of non-profit organisation Ahla Fawda and Ms Labelle have also helped to launch the fundraiser, with the aim of “helping the needy and raising money and supplies for those who need it most”.

“We will be documenting all of the handlings of the funds received and also provide evidence of them getting distributed to aid those affected by this catastrophic event,” it states on the relief fund’s page.

“Donations will help us purchase supplies; food, water, first aid, meal boxes, providing shelter, medical supplies, paying for medical bills of those injured by the explosion, aiding repairs of homes, etc.”

To donate, click here.

Islamic Relief Lebanon Emergency Appeal

Islamic Relief, a charity that offers international aid and development, has launched an emergency appeal to help provide food and water supplies to those in need following the explosions in Beirut.

Nidal Ali, Islamic Relief Lebanon country director, stated that in the next few days, the organisation “will also start helping to clear the streets of the debris caused by the blast, providing people currently out of work with cash to help out”.

In the long-term, the charity will continue providing food parcels, as the destruction of the city’s port means that “food imports will be significantly reduced to a country that is already on its knees”.

“All of us in Beirut are still in shock after yesterday’s explosion. I was at home and the glass doors of our balcony shattered – at first we thought it was an earthquake,” Ali said.

“This is yet another tragedy for a country that is already deep in crisis on multiple fronts.”

To donate, click here.

Embrace Lifeline

The Embrace Lifeline is a helpline that provides mental health support for those in need in Lebanon.

Launched in collaboration with the National Mental Health Programme at the Ministry of Public Health, and part of the United Nations Global Compact group, the Embrace Lifeline states it is the “first national emotional support and suicide prevention helpline in Lebanon”.

When people call the helpline on 1564, they are put in touch with trained operators who can offer them guidance in terms of mental health support, in addition to offering emotional support and carrying out suicide risk assessment.

To donate, click here.

Live Love Beirut

Live Love Beirut, an organisation committed to creating social impact, is asking for people to donate money to its monthly fund to help support non-profit organisations in the aftermath of the Beirut explosions.

“Our beloved city is in ruins. Homes of people who can’t even access their bank accounts and who are living on half or no salaries are shattered,” the organisation stated in a social media post.

The non-governmental organisation Live Love Lebanon, who are behind Live Love Beirut, stated that it has already authenticated non-profit organisations that will receive donations from its crisis fund.

It adds that members of the public can submit their own suggestions for initiatives that would benefit from aid.

To donate, click here.

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