Contribution to the UNICEF Lebanon Program 2021



Contract partner: UNICEF - United Nations Children's Fund - New YorkCountry: Libanon Funding amount: € 1.000.000,00Project start: 01.08.2021End: 31.12.2021

Short Description:

Overall goal


The program aims to provide immediate access to water services and strengthen immunization supply chain through cold chain management.


Expected results


The proposed project focuses on the critical continuation of humanitarian activities in the areas of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) and Health that are required due to the ongoing complexity on the ground impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and worsening economic crisis. The Austrian contribution will support the following results:

- Maintain the provision of safe water to all girls, boys and their families and mitigate social tensions among the marginalized populations through equitable and improved access to more efficient and sustainable safe water supplies.

- Equip main points of the Expanded Programme for Immunization (EPI) with needed cold chain equipment and provide cold rooms with solar panels to ensure sustainable energy source.


Target group / Beneficiaries


With the Austrian contribution, the following beneficiaries can be reached:

- WASH: 25,000 individuals (50% female and 50% male) will have access quantity of safe, drinking water.

- Health: 14 cold room will benefit from sustainable energy (solar) instalments and 28 immunization facilities will benefit from solar fridges. Indirectly, this will enable 1,500 girls and boys under the age of five to be provided with vaccines on a monthly basis.

Partners: UNICEF directly implements the WASH component and third-party organisations are contracted for the Health component (e.g. UNICEF's long-term agreement holder Makram Barakat).

Location: The program coverage is at national level. To identify and prioritize the most vulnerable populations, UNICEF, in collaboration with UNDP, UNOCHA, UNHCR and the Ministry of Social Affairs, has developed a vulnerability map identifying 251 localities (with approximately two million vulnerable people). In these areas, demand for basic services continues to far outstrip the capacity of institutions and infrastructure to meet needs, which has led to social tensions that could develop into significant communal violence. Extreme poverty, rising unemployment and desperation are driving negative coping strategies, including child and youth labour and early marriages. Long-standing economic inequalities are becoming more widespread and environmental pressures are increasing. These 251 localities contain 67 percent of the vulnerable Lebanese population, 85 percent of the registered Syrian refugees and 93 percent of Palestine refugees.


Activities


The following activities can be supported with the Austrian contribution:

- Support the continuity of water services in Lebanon. To respond to the water crisis, the water systems support component will focus on maintaining service levels at pumping stations through repair and maintenance of pumping equipment and chlorination systems, provision of fuel where needed, procurement of chlorine among other consumables and spare parts to ensure delivery of clean water to beneficiaries.

- Procurement and Instalment of World Health Organization's Performance, Quality Safety (PQS) qualified solar refrigerators and ensure operational needs for quality immunization supply chain. UNICEF conducted a National Cold Chain Equipment Inventory in July 2021; the unofficial preliminary findings show that the minimum requirement in terms of cold chain is the urgent need for procuring a minimum of 592 cold chain equipment (such as combined/ solar refrigerators and ice-lined refrigerators). According to the initial data of the assessment, 1,313 cold chain equipment were checked, out of which, 962 (73%) are found to be WHO qualified, however nearly 55% of those are not safe for continued storage of vaccines. To mitigate this risk, UNICEF will procure and install 28 solar refrigerators and 14 solar panels for cold rooms to ensure safe vaccine storage.


Context


WASH: Competition to access scarce water resources is one of the major reasons of tensions between Lebanese and Syrian refugees, and even between Lebanese communities themselves. Moreover, the water sector is on the brink of collapse by the economic crisis in Lebanon, unable to function due to the dollarized maintenance costs, water loss caused by non-revenue water, the parallel collapse of the power grid and the threat of rising fuel costs. While no statistics on clashes and coping mechanism are out yet, according to a UNICEF-supported assessment in May and June 2021:

- More than 71% of people fall within ‘highly critical’ and ‘critical’ levels of vulnerability.

- Nearly 1.7 million people have access to only 35 litres a day, a decrease of almost 80% against the national average of 165 litres.

- Since 2020 there has been an increase of 35% of the prices of private sector bulk water supplies, while the cost of bottled water has doubled.

Unless urgent action is taken, more than four million people across Lebanon – predominantly vulnerable children and families – face the prospect of critical water shortages or being completely cut off from safe water supply in the coming days.


Health: The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted critical life-saving services such as routine immunization, thus increasing the susceptibility to outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases. In 2020, Lebanon witnessed a low routine immunization coverage rate, whereby 31% national level decrease (i.e. at public and private sector) was reported between February and April 2020, leaving many children at risk. The gap has further increased with the ongoing shortage of fuel and lack of reliable electricity, leaving safe storage of routine and COVID-19 vaccines in jeopardy. To ensure safe availability of vaccines in Lebanon, UNICEF in partnership with the Ministry of Public Health and UNRWA has conducted Cold Chain Equipment Inventory, which showed major gaps in the existing cold chain in the public immunization points. It is now critical to shift to the World Health Organization’s pre-qualified solar refrigerators to guarantee the safe storage of millions of vaccines at the district (Qadaa) level and at the immunization service points.

project number2694-09/2021
source of fundingAKF
sector Humanitäre Hilfe: Sofortmaßnahmen
tied0
modality
marker Poverty: 1
  • Policy marker: are used to identify, assess and facilitate the monitoring of activities in support of policy objectives concerning gender equality, aid to environment, participatory development/good governance, trade development and reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health. Activities targeting the objectives of the Rio Conventions include the identification of biodiversity, climate change mitigation, climate change adaptation, and desertification.
    • 1= policy is a significant objective of the activity
    • 2= policy is the principal objective of the activity
  • Donor/ source of funding: The ADA is not only implementing projects and programmes of the Austrian Development Cooperation , but also projects funded from other sources and donors such as
    • AKF - Foreign Disaster Fund of the Austrian federal government
    • BMLFUW - Federal Ministry for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water
    • EU - Funds of the European Commission
    • Others - various other donors are listed in ADA’s annual business report.
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  • Purpose/ sector code: classifies the specific area of the recipient’s economic or social structure, funded by a bilateral contribution.
  • Tied/Untied: Untied aid is defined as loans and grants whose proceeds are fully and freely available to finance procurement from all OECD countries and substantially all developing countries. Transactions are considered tied unless the donor has, at the time of the aid offer, clearly specified a range of countries eligible for procurement which meets the tests for “untied” aid.