Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) response teams in Lebanon are providing emergency supplies to recovery workers and survivors of the massive explosion in Beirut’s port.
The huge blast struck the Lebanese capital city on August 4 and killed at least 135 people, wounded more than 5,000, and left more than 300,000 people homeless.
“Responders say they have never seen anything like this before. The images look like a war zone. The first dispatched ambulance teams were killed by the explosion. We are delivering water and essential equipment to firefighters and civil defense workers,” said Gunther Wallauer, ADRA regional director for the Middle East and North Africa. “We are providing bedding supplies, so they have a place to rest; they need cots, tents, generators for lights, since electricity is out in most of the city. We know there’s devastation in several neighborhoods close to the epicenter. Our teams on the ground are quickly assessing the situation to provide immediate aid to children and families.”
ADRA teams will tour at least five neighborhoods and area schools surrounding the blast zone to begin to deploy humanitarian support, including water and food to the victims.
Authorities believe the deadly blast could have been caused by tons of highly explosive material stored in a warehouse at the main port. The disaster is overwhelming a country already dealing with an economic crisis and the coronavirus pandemic.
“Our prayers are with the Lebanese nation, especially the children and families affected by this catastrophe and all who lost loved ones and are injured. We have been on the ground since the coronavirus outbreak, helping the Lebanese community cope with the health and economic challenges of the pandemic and are ready to provide additional support during this added crisis,” said ADRA president Michael Kruger. “We are committed to increasing our emergency response activities to provide life-saving essentials to those in need of assistance.”
ADRA is working with church volunteers, local authorities, and partners in Beirut to coordinate the relief and recovery operations. To assist with ADRA’s emergency response in Lebanon, please visit ADRA.org/Disasters.