Status: ongoing – project is being implemented continuously since 2012
- securing basic shelter for 630 Syrian refugee families in northern Lebanon (approx. 2840 people);
- decreasing economic burden of Lebanese families hosting or renting apartments to Syrian refugees;
- preventing homelessness and impoverishment of refugees;
- prolonging safe and dignified stay in exile;
- improving housing conditions, including preparing winter shelters for several dozens of Syrian refugee families.
Background and description of needs
Due to the ongoing civil war in Syria more than 2 million people have left the country. Those refugees, as well as hundreds of other Syrians who have been staying outside the country, are unable to return to their homes due to the brutal war that has claimed more than 100,000 victims.
Syrian refugees look for safety and shelter mainly in the four neighboring countries: Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq. The most current information and figures on the number of refugees staying in those countries can be found on the UNHCR website. The situation in every country affected by the refugee crisis is different. In Turkey and Jordan, refugees live in camps organized by the local authorities and UNHCR.
The camps provide shelter, food, water, washing facilities, bathrooms, as well as offer education and health care. Living conditions in the camps, especially those located in arid Jordan, are extremely difficult. There are no camps for Syrian refugees in Lebanon though; therefore refugees are forced to look for shelters themselves. In the end, most of the refugees rent apartments or other lodging spaces such as garages, basements, closed shops, storages, paying 200-400$ a month.
Because of the high cost of rent and food, refugees lose their savings or any material goods they had managed to take with them when leaving their homeland within just a couple of months. This often pushes them into extreme poverty as they quickly get into debt for unpaid rent that often accumulates into thousands of dollars.
The PCPM’s project that has been continuously run since mid-2012 aims at securing basic shelter for 630 refugee families (approx. 2840 people) currently living in 11 locations in north-eastern Lebanon. Thanks to the previous UN funding and the current funds from Polish Aid, PCPM is able to pay rent to Lebanese families letting apartments to refugees or reimburse Lebanese families for the costs of hosting refugees if they do not have to pay rent. Financial resources to cover those costs are transferred to families via debit cards issued by a Polish bank.
The families receiving humanitarian aid provided by PCPM will have their shelters secured at least until the end of December 2013. 350 families (55% of the recipients of the PCPM’s project) have had their housing secured continuously since December 2012 – PCPM has been renting houses on their behalf and has been paying monthly rent. In December 2013, those families will have been covered by the housing aid project for 16-17 months, making the PCPM’s project one of the longest running and most comprehensive humanitarian programs ever undertaken by a Polish organization.
As of August 30, 2013, the PCPM’s project provides help to 630 Syrian refugee families (approx. 2840 people). The PCPM’s project helps not only Syrian refugees but also the local community in Lebanon that receives the funds for letting houses to and hosting refugees.
The project is being implemented in 11 locations in the north-eastern part of Lebanon, in a 10 kilometer-wide area along the Syrian border. Both Muslim and Christian locations are included in the project. The area covered by the PCPM’s project is only 40 km away from the Syrian city of Homs and only a couple of kilometers from the city of Tall Kalakh in Syria that serve as battlefields between governmental forces and the rebels.
Coordination with the United Nations
PCPM coordinates its projects and actions in Lebanon with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The PCPM’s project, funded by Polish Aid, is an integral part of the Regional Response Plan for Syrian Refugees coordinated by UNHCR. Learn more
UNHCR’s weekly report for the wider Syrian refugee response in the Middle East zooms on the PCPM’s project, describing its benefits for the refugees and host community alike. Read the report
Playgrounds for refugee children
Within the framework of the project, we financed the construction of two playgrounds for children of Syrian refugees in Lebanon. The playgrounds were manufactured by Inter-Flora Sp. z o.o.. The main objective of this initiative is to reduce war trauma and its effects on children who became eye witnesses of the armed conflict in this part of the world. The project run by our organization secures well-being of 630 Syrian families, consisting mostly of children. PCPM emphasizes proper children development, and apart from providing dignified housing conditions, it also chooses to build playgrounds for children of Syrian refugees in Lebanon.
The current phase of the project (May-December 2013) is financed with funds, amounting to 1.96 million PLN, received under the Polish humanitarian program of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The previous phases of the project were financed by Polish Aid (July-December 2012) with 1 million PLN and by the UN – the UN Emergency Response Fund for Syria (January-April 2013) with 250 thousand dollars.