URGENT APPEAL FOR LEBANON

Posted by Nikki

child-packs-ver-1RASI-RINE/ FRANCE AND BEYOND HUB 31 is now accepting donations for a fifth container of aid. The container will be sent to Lebanon (here is why). Donations will be accepted at the HUB31 Storage in Escanecrabe until November 1. Please read on to find out how you can help.

Europe is being gripped by the largest refugee crises since the Second World War. One-third of those refugees are fleeing Syria as a result of the almost five-year-old civil war there. Most refugees have been absorbed into neighbouring Arab countries and many have fled to Europe.

There are currently well over 1 million registered Syrian refugees living in Lebanon and many more who have yet to be documented. Most have been there since the beginning of the civil war.  The reality is that Lebanon (about the same size as Cornwall) cannot cope with 1.5 million Syrian and 500,000 Palestinian refugees.

RASI-RINE/ FRANCE AND BEYOND HUB 31 are pleased to announce that a fifth container is now confirmed and we are currently accepting donations at the HUB31 Storage in Escanecrabe until November 1, 2016. The container will be sent to Lebanon.

The container is organised by RASI-RINE (in association with People to People Solidarity Southern Europe and Middle East) and this time is funded by the UK-registered charity, Muslims in Need.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Hygiene and food are the most urgently needed items.  You can make a financial donation towards these items in the following ways:

Donate via https://www.lepotcommun.fr/pot/cda4llxj

Donate via Paypal: paypal.me/rasirine

Or order from our Amazon Wish List for direct delivery to Hub31.

Urgent Needs

The refugees in Lebanon are in dire need of food, medicine, and supplies for personal hygiene and for babies. With that in mind, we are asking for donations of the following items ONLY:

Family hygiene
Shampoo (preferable 2 in 1), soap, wash cloths, sanitary towels (not tampons), toothbrushes, toothpaste, toiletry cases, shower gel, body lotion, hand sanitiser gel, facial tissues, deodorant, disposable razors, shaving gel, hairbrushes, combs, soap holders, incontinence pads, hair bobbles, new underwear, intimate wipes

Mother and baby Items
Nappies, nappy rash cream, baby wipes, nursing pads, baby shampoo and soap

Food
NO MEAT OR ONLY HALAL
Nuts: various kinds, dried fruits, coconut oil, bulgur wheat, red lentil, green lentil, ghee
Tea: regular, fruit herbal medicinal teas – chamomile, peppermint, valerian, sleep teas
Tinned veg  (with RING PULL CANS): white beans, green beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, Lentils, Potatoes, peas, carrots, tomatoes, mushrooms, mixed beans, sweetcorn)
Tinned  fish (including tuna, salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel)
Tinned fruit (including peaches , pears, pineapple, fruit cocktail, mandarin)
tomato paste, mixed grains, cinnamon, chilli, garlic paste, pickled goods.
Cereals: biscuits, unsalted mixed nuts and raisins, cereal bars, Weetabix/porridge/other cereals
Pastas/rice: preferably large bags and easy cook
Other foodstuffs Jars of clear honey,  cartons fruit juice/fruit squash, peanut butter, chocolate spread
Milk: whole longlife milk, condensed milk
Baby milk (bottles and cartons of – NOT powder thanks )
Baby food pouches (non-meat)

OTHER ITEMS

We already have enough clothes from previous collections.
The only clothes Items we are short of now are:

NEW OR IN VERY GOOD CLEAN CONDITION
Children’s and adult shoes and boots – all sizes – high quality (box by size, tie with strong elastic band)
New underwear for all
Sleeping bags, blankets, duvets
Rugs, camping mats, matting (for insulating floors)
Cooking equipment and utensils, plastic plates – best sorted into kits for easy distribution on ground
Insulating and waterproof materials for tents
Education (backpacks, paper, pencils, scissors, crayons, balls, colouring books, soft toys etc)

Packing instructions

Please sort your donations into the categories above and place into clearly labelled boxes or bags. All our volunteers have a huge volume of donations to pack and sort and this will help us enormously – thank you.

DROP OFF POINTS

Please contact our volunteers first to arrange a suitable time for drop off:

RASI-RINE/FAB HUB 31
Moulin d’en Bas
31350 Escanecrabe
Contact: Nikki McArthur
nikkidmcarthur@gmail.com
Last delivery: November 3
Preferred drop off day Thursdays – please message in advance.
https://www.facebook.com/FABHUB31

Blagnac/Toulouse
Stephanie Poncet-Meunier
rasi.rine.association@gmail.com
Last delivery: tba

32320 Gers
Louisa Halliwell
Louisa@enjouanisson.fr
Last delivery: tba

65350 Osmets
(Nr Trie sur Baise)
Lynch Mason
Email : Mason.lynch@gmail.com address
Last delivery October 22

North Dordogne Hub 24800
(nearest town Thiviers)
St Paul La Roche 24800
Tel : 0553629379
If you live in the area then you should join our Hub for news and info at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/266946200312843/
Last delivery: tba

64 Pau
Lindy Gander
Lindy.gander@sfr.fr
Last delivery: tba

34 Pezenas/Roujan
Joel Bamber
0682774428
Last delivery: October 22

34 Gabian
Bassie Scott
0467251103
Last delivery: tba

Bordeaux/Bergerac
Please contact the France and Beyond Bordeaux/Bergerac group via this link https://www.facebook.com/groups/1619536878312483/

12 Capdenac
Clare Bickerton and Rose Dodd (French enquiries)
clarebickerton@hotmail.com
rose12260@hotmail.com
Last delivery: tba

Aude
11120 Sainte Valiere
Jan Letchford
0430374696
janet.letchford@sfr.fr
Last delivery: tba

Smaller items and internet orders can be posted directly to:

Mme N McArthur
Kingdom Vegetal
Moulin d’en Bas
31350 Escanecrabe
FRANCE

Many thanks for your continued support.

Nikki McArthur
International Relations Representative
RASI-RINE

Please click here to meet the team involved in organising this container.

What’s happening in Lebanon

Posted by Nikki

We thought we’d provide some context about what’s happening in Lebanon to better explain why there is an urgent need for aid there. Thanks to Collette Ridley, from France and Beyond / RASI-RINE HUB31, for this report.

Remember Beirut? The Lebanese city of Beirut was a constant feature in the news throughout the eighties. I remember TV reports peppered with scenes of sectarian violence, car bombs and political assassinations.

In the 16 years since the end of the civil war, the tiny country of Lebanon (the size of Cornwall) has been quietly dragging itself from the rubble out of sight of news cameras. The religious and political divisions are still ever-present though and have made recovery slow and difficult.

Lebanese infrastructure is fragile and, as with any emerging nation, corruption and state incompetence are rife. Against such a backdrop, it seems improbable that this smallest of Middle Eastern countries should be host to the second highest number of Syrians displaced by the Syrian civil war. Yet it’s not hard to see why. Lebanon shares borders with Palestine and Syria and, despite problems at home, the warm Lebanese people have opened their arms to Syrian and Palestinian refugees.

SYRIAN REFUGEES

lebanon

Incomers to Lebanon have swollen the population by nearly half – the UNHCR estimates 1.8 million refugees for a local population of just 4 million.

In a controversial move last year, the buckling Lebanese state closed its borders to refugees. Since then, the UNHCR has been unable to register new refugees (an estimated 500,000 people) on the official refugee lists, thus denying them rights to basic benefits for food and healthcare.

An estimated 70% of Syrian refugees in Lebanon live in a state of extreme poverty on a mere 70 cents a day (the UN poverty line is $US1.90). These displaced people have little to eat and the quality of water is poor. Refugees have inadequate access to healthcare, and they cannot afford to go to hospital (Lebanon has a privatised healthcare system). Unsurprisingly, the universal health problems and infectious diseases of the poor have raised their ugly heads: malnutrition, cholera, polio, birth defects, and eye and ear infections.

The lightweight, unsewered shacks refugees make for themselves (there are no official refugee camps) are hopelessly ill-suited to either the 40oC plus days of high summer or the freezing conditions of winter. Old and young alike are dying of exposure.

The Lebanese are doing what they can, but the sheer weight of numbers on already inadequate public services such schools, hospitals and even refuse collections has led to a meltdown in provision.

An inevitable uptick in civil unrest in response to this chaos has forced the country to call out for aid, but the world sits by and little is being done. The UNHCR hopes to raise $US1.9 billion to help Lebanon deal with Syrian refugees, but to date less than half that target has been met.

GEOPOLITICS

Lebanon sits precariously on the edge of the greatest conflict of our times. In the Middle East the high-income countries of Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Bahrain have offered to resettle a total of zero refugees. The wealthy countries of Western Europe, along with the US, would prefer to take none.

Few in the world want to host victims of the Syrian conflict, yet no one is supporting Lebanon do so. Lebanon is alone shouldering the crippling economic demands and demographic changes that nearly 2 million refugees represent to such a small country.

Even so, the role of Lebanon, alongside Turkey and Jordan, is crucial to what happens next. These countries form a buffer zone for refugees fleeing the Syrian conflict. Without Lebanon, Syrians would face a stark choice: go north and west towards Europe, or stay and die.

As the Lebanese watch some of the world’s youngest and most vulnerable refugees helpless in face of the poverty and suffering from malnutrition, disease and exposure, they ask themselves: where is the rest of the world?

CALL TO ACTION

Now is the moment for the world to help Lebanon hold the chalice rejected by so many others. While governments are frozen by inaction as people are dying, you don’t have to be. You can be part of an effective grassroots movement to throw a lifeline to those most in need in Lebanon. Here is how you can make a difference in the greatest humanitarian crisis facing the world today:

Click here for details on how you can help.