HEKS/EPER doubles emergency aid to 600'000 francs

Given the dire situation facing the people of Beirut, HEKS/EPER is doubling its emergency aid for victims of the disaster to 600,000 francs in total.

The full extent of the destruction caused by the explosion of 2500 tonnes of ammonium nitrate stored improperly in a warehouse at the port of Beirut is becoming clearer with each passing day. The number of deaths has now risen to at least 171 and over 6000 people were injured, some of them seriously. Thousands of houses and apartment buildings were destroyed or badly damaged by the force of the blast. In an instant, over 300,000 people were left homeless.
HEKS erhöht Nothilfe für die Opfer der Explosionskatastrophe in Beirut/Libanon

Emergency aid is now urgently needed, especially for the roughly 300,000 people made homeless in an instant. HEKS/EPER is therefore supporting some 1750 families and households whose houses and apartments are located within a radius of two kilometres of the site of the explosion and who were therefore hit particularly hard by the disaster. These families are receiving 200 US dollars in unconditional cash, disbursed in two instalments, to enable them buy vital items such as food and toiletries. These immediate measures are being implemented by «Najdeh», the local HEKS/EPER partner organisation of long standing.

HEKS/EPER is also helping with the restoration of badly damaged buildings, including the community centre of the HEKS/EPER partner organisation «Union of the Armenian Evangelical Churches in the Near East» (UAECNE) in Beirut.

Supported by Swiss solidarity, HEKS/EPER has been providing humanitarian aid in Lebanon for many years, including for Syrian refugees and guest families. Besides, as part of church cooperation with Reformed partner churches, HEKS/EPER also supports afternoon schools, basic and continuing education programmes for employees, local church parish initiatives to integrate refugees and recreational activities for children and young people.
Swiss Solidarity is helping to fund the current emergency aid project as well.

Samuel Berner
Head of Media and Information Department
Samuel Berner

Phone: +41 44 360 88 25
Mobile: +41 76 461 88 70
E-mail: samuel.berner@heks.ch