Iraqi Refugees in Lebanon

CRS Communications Coordinator Jennifer Hardy is traveling with winners of the 2008 Egan Award for Journalistic Excellence . They are seeing the Church’s work with Iraqi refugees in Lebanon and Syria.

On our first day of seeing CRS-supported projects in Lebanon we met with the dedicated staff of Caritas Lebanon Migrant Center (CLMC), and then accompanied social workers on visits with Iraqi refugees.

Egan Award Trip

Three year old Ali is all grins, thanks in part to the asthma medication he receives from Caritas Lebanon Migrant Center.Photo by Jennifer Hardy/CRS

I met Ali, age 3, when we talked with his parents about the difficulty of their lives in Lebanon. Six family members – mother, father and four children – live in one room in the basement of a retail building. A small kitchen with a toilet hugs the back wall. The cramped, dank living conditions have led to asthma for the children.

When Egan winner Chris Herlinger asked the father, Hussein, where he found hope for the future, he answered “When I see my children in front of me, I see that they need me to survive, but I don’t know where hope is coming from.” CLMC, with support from CRS and in coordination with the U.N High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR), provides assistance to make the family’s life a little better in Beirut – everything from mattresses and fans to medical care and help navigating the education system. Based on the smile on Ali’s face I think there is hope for the family, even if it is hard to see from a basement.

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One Response to “Iraqi Refugees in Lebanon”

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