Lebanon remains at the forefront of the Syrian crisis. The country hosts over one million Syrian refugees. Already limited before the crisis, the public infrastructure such as water supply networks, sanitation systems and solid waste management is under severe strain. Both Lebanese and Syrians face a struggle to have access to basic services, particularly water and sanitation.
The SDC supports a project of the Lebanese Red Cross (LRC) which respond to the needs of this vulnerable population. The LRC provided first basic services such as the distribution of garbage bins, hygiene kits and jerry cans. It also provided households with a 1000 litre water tank to store this precious commodity without risk of contamination. Trucks visit the 1010 households targeted by the project to fill the tanks.
LRC works on improving living conditions through newly built or restored latrines as well as new sewage pits. The beneficiaries also received latrine cleaning kits and solar lanterns for safe access to latrines and water facilities at night.
In a second step, the LRC will focus on more sustainable measures on a larger scale. These activities include the rehabilitation of wells, water and sewage networks. Communities will be involved in the maintenance of these facilities. The project will benefit up to 27,000 people in the area by its completion in 2020.
Water and sanitation is a thematic priority for the SDC in Lebanon. In 2017, it devoted 19 million CHF to support projects in this sector in the Middle East. The partnership between the SDC and the LRC dates back to 2006.