In wake of the huge explosion in Beirut on Tuesday evening, Plan International is working with partners in Lebanon to assess the damage and what support children, their families and communities need most urgently.
Colin Lee, Plan International’s Country Director for Lebanon, said: “It’s very difficult to comprehend the scale of the devastation right now. It’s extensive, and people’s lives have been turned upside down.
“Along with many other buildings near the port area, our offices in Beirut were badly damaged in the blast yesterday, and two members of staff were injured by flying glass as they were driving home from work.
“Although a full picture of the damage is still emerging, we are very concerned about the impact this will have on children, their families and communities in the days and weeks ahead. Huge swathes of the city have been destroyed, and on top of the COVID-19 pandemic, Lebanon has already been going through a social, economic, political crisis since October last year. Shops selling essential supplies are among the buildings which have now been reduced to rubble, and many families on low incomes are unlikely to be able to afford to replace their windows and doors.
“We are working with partners as quickly as possible to establish what is most urgently needed and stand ready to scale up our operations and play our part in supporting those who have been affected.”
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Plan International, a leading child rights and humanitarian organisation, has been providing child protection and sexual and reproductive health services in Lebanon, both for Syrian refugees and the Lebanese host population. All of these programmes remain operational.