Canadians step up to provide aid to the people of Lebanon
[Aug. 27, 2020: Joseph Shavit]
Since the explosion on August 4 that rocked the port city of Beirut, Canadians have been uniting their efforts to raise funds in order to provide emergency assistance to affected populations.
The Humanitarian Coalition, an alliance of 12 leading Canadian charities, ran a fundraising appeal with the support of the Canadian government, that pledged to match donations by individual Canadians up to a total of $8 million dollars.
The $8 million matching fund goal was achieved on August 24. As of today, including donations from individuals, corporations and foundations, the Humanitarian Coalition has raised $9.9 million, bringing the total funds available for humanitarian assistance, including the government’s contribution, to $ 17.9 million.
Humanitarian Coalition agencies have been at work together with local partners in Beirut since the blast, providing food, shelter, personal care items, medical care and financial support to people in need. These funds will enable relief efforts to continue and expand in a country already stretched by economic instability, a refugee crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As a coalition, we strongly believe in the power of working together. The collaboration between aid agencies, the commitment of the Government of Canada, the support of corporate and media partners, and the generosity of the Lebanese community and the Canadian public will continue to rebuild lives and restore communities in the wake of this tragedy. We are so grateful for everyone’s contribution.” – Richard Morgan, Executive Director of the Humanitarian Coalition
“Action Against Hunger is grateful for the investment made by the Government of Canada to help mobilize donations to address the challenges in Lebanon. This support allows our teams on the ground to work with local partners to provide immediate support to affected families so that they can access sufficient and diverse foods, and so that stores, markets and small businesses can reopen. We also thank Canadians, especially the Lebanese community, for their generosity, which helps us tackle malnutrition, save lives, and contribute to rebuilding strong and resilient communities in Lebanon.” – Danny Glenwright, Executive Director, Action Against Hunger
“We’re grateful for the generous response of Canadians and the Canadian government. When the explosion destroyed Lebanon’s main port where the country imported most of their food, as well as the grain silos estimated to hold 85% of the country’s grain stocks, we were concerned about the number of families who would face hunger. Now, thanks to this generosity, our partners on the ground can ensure families have the food they need to survive and recover from this devastating explosion. The Humanitarian Coalition demonstrates what can be achieved when we work together to help families in crisis.” – Jim Cornelius, Executive Director, Canadian Foodgrains Bank
“Even when we’re facing our own challenges, Canadians are compassionate and generous people, and we’re so grateful for the way this country has responded to the blast in Lebanon. Thanks to the generosity of Canadians, life-saving support is already reaching those who need it most, and as the people of Lebanon face the long, difficult road after this tragedy, that support from Canadians will mean families have the resources they need to put their lives back together.” – Karin Achtelstetter, Executive Director, Canadian Lutheran World Relief
“We have been deeply moved by how people across Canada have come together to respond to the crisis in Lebanon. We thank the Government of Canada for their matching fund which helped drive this appeal. Working with local Lebanese organizations, Oxfam has already been able to reach some of the most at-risk communities, including women, refugees, the elderly, the LGBTQ community and people with disabilities. There is a long road of rebuilding ahead, but with the generous support of Canadians, we have been able to quickly deliver much-needed emergency relief in Beirut and the surrounding areas.” – Kate Higgins, Interim Executive Director, Oxfam Canada.
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The following agencies are members of the Humanitarian Coalition: Action Against Hunger, Canadian Foodgrains Bank, Canadian Lutheran World Relief, CARE Canada, Doctors of the World, Humanity & Inclusion, Islamic Relief Canada, Oxfam Canada, Oxfam-Québec, Plan International Canada, Save the Children, World Vision.
While the Matching Fund period is closed, the Humanitarian Coalition will continue to accept donations for the Lebanon crisis up to September 4, 2020.
The Humanitarian Coalition brings together twelve leading aid organizations to provide Canadians with a simple and effective way to help during humanitarian emergencies.