In the middle of the afternoon local time on Tuesday, life all over Beirut, Lebanon was interrupted in a flash that reached screens around the world in no time. The immense explosion of materials being stored at the city’s port sent reporters ducking for cover in the middle of zoom interviews, foreigners into shock, and locals into action. This compelling account from the New York Times paints a portrait of a mobilized, collective spirit taking over the city even as it reeled from the sudden devastation. The same spirit instigated an online movement to support Lebanon’s emergency services in the aftermath, with resources and donation links being shared across social media.
If it seems as though something like this couldn’t happen at a worse time than in the midst of a pandemic, you’d unfortunately be correct — Lebanon was already experiencing a massive economic crisis that risked depleting food supplies to the point of famine. While it’s likely that more ways to directly support those groups providing immediate relief will emerge in the coming days, right now there are only a number of reputable and certifiable points of access to the efforts. We will continue to update this list as more resources become available, and Passion Passport urges everyone in our community to do their research on the ultimate destination of any donations they might give.
Where to Give:
- The Lebanese Red Cross, the main provider of ambulance services in the country. It is currently routing ambulances from all regions of Lebanon to coordinate a response to areas of Beirut most in need. Everyone can make a one-time donation.
- CNN and Public Good have joined together to collect funds for a number of international organizations who can provide additional support to Lebanese authorities, including the American Red Cross, International Medical Corps, and the United States Fund for UNICEF.
- UNICEF Lebanon has been working for over 70 years to access the most at-risk communities and children in the country, and are currently on the ground in Beirut assisting the Ministry of Public Health in protecting medical supplies near the blast zone. They’re also providing psycho-social care to any children who may have been affected by the crisis.
- A group called Impact Lebanon (who are behind a viral Instagram post about relief efforts) are also partnering with a charity called Baytna Barak that provided free housing to healthcare workers during the pandemic. Together, they’re now raising funds to find shelter for those left without it as a result of the blast.
- NGO Atfalouna is gathering donations to help distribute milk and diapers to children across Lebanon, and you can donate directly to them here.
- Caritas Lebanon are providing mental and physical first aid, distributing medicine along with food and water, and offering general assistance to victims and cleanup efforts. You can donate here.
- Beitel Baraka runs programs providing greater access to food and shelter for Lebanese citizens, and will play a part in housing and caring for displaced victims. Donate here.
- The Lebanese Food Bank needs support now more than ever, as food shortages already threatened the country before the blast and more food supplies have now been lost. Donate here.
- Ahla Fawda is an NGO dedicated to all aspects of community health, and their linktree currently directs users to a gofundme for general explosion relief, as well as places you can send funds to buy supplies or food boxes.
The team at Passion Passport is greatly saddened by the news of the explosion, and offers our sympathy and platform in the hopes that the Lebanese community receives the support it needs at this time.