Contribution to the WFP Country Strategic Plan Lebanon 2020 (Food Assistance)
The purpose of WFP’s intervention is to increase household purchasing power to enable people to meet their food and other basic needs across blast-affected areas in Beirut and to vulnerable populations who have been affected by the triple shock due to the loss of business, income or support.
WFP’s Country Strategic Plan in Lebanon (CSP) aims at contributing to the following Strategic Outcomes:
Strategic outcome 1: Food-insecure refugees – including school-age children – and crisis-affected host populations have access to life-saving, nutritious and affordable food throughout the year.
Strategic outcome 2: Vulnerable women and men in targeted refugee and Lebanese communities sustainably improve their skills, capacities and livelihood opportunities by 2020.
Strategic outcome 3: Vulnerable populations in Lebanon are enabled to meet their basic food needs all year long.
Strategic outcome 4: National institutions and national and international humanitarian actors are supported in their efforts to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of their assistance.
Target group / Beneficiaries
The contribution of EUR 600,000 from Austria will enable WFP Lebanon to support approximately 29,124 beneficiaries with USD 212 per person through cash-based Transfers (CBT) for one month, under WFP’s emergency response in blast-affected areas in Beirut and to vulnerable populations who have been affected by the current crisis in Lebanon. Given the urban context and the strength of the markets, CBT assistance is scaled up for most affected and vulnerable people starting in September 2020. This will boost the local economy and support its recovery while providing beneficiaries with choice to meet their food and basic needs.
WFP works with established international and national NGO partners for the explosion response such as SHEILD, CARITAS, and ACTED.
WFP aims to provide food assistance to up to 420,000 people through immediate, emergency food
assistance to those most in need:
1) Up to 150,000 people who are directly affected by the primary impact of the blast will receive food assistance as an immediate response. Of this number, 5,000 family food parcels are being
distributed for hot meals or for people to take home, if they have suitable facilities to cook.
• WFP plans to respond to additional food and basic needs through CBT by providing cash-based
transfers to allow beneficiaries to access food in the market.
2) Up to 270,000 people assessed to be the most vulnerable to the triple shock:
• This group was already scheduled to receive in-kind WFP food parcels due to heightened
vulnerability, to help them cope with the effects of the economic crisis and COVID-19.
• Pre-planned food support will now be followed by 3-months of CBT support to help them cope
with the additional livelihood strain that will result from the impact of the blast.
A series of explosions at the Beirut Port on 4 August 2020 devastated much of the facility and decimated surrounding commercial and residential areas, leaving at least 190 people dead while injuring more than 6,000 people. The Government of Lebanon estimates that more than 300,000 people have been rendered without shelter, and multiple health facilities, already overburdened by COVID-19 response, have sustained damage.
Lebanon, long considered a middle-income country, is rapidly sinking into poverty, as it faces a triple shock from the Beirut explosion, an economic meltdown and the impact of COVID-19. It is also at the forefront of the Syrian crisis, hosting 1.5 million refugees (30 percent of Lebanon’s original population). In recent months, Lebanon has faced a wave of multiple crises – political, economic and sanitary - unprecedented in magnitude, with devastating effects on the economic vulnerabilities of households. The lockdown imposed by the COVID-19 outbreak has further aggravated the impact of the combined crises unfolding since October 2019, generating large scale job redundancies, reducing income opportunities and increasing competition over resources. In July 2020, the Food Price Index (FPI) recorded an increase by 336.2 percent compared to July 20191, the highest recorded increase since the start of tracking of the FPI (2007). The World Bank estimates that 45 percent of the Lebanese population would fall into poverty as a result of the economic and COVID-19 crises, and a recent WFP survey found that food has become a major source of concern, with 50 percent of Lebanese respondents saying over the past month they felt worried they would not have enough food to eat.