Zeina Allouche, director of SOS Children's Villages Lebanon, is particularly concerned about what will happen to children who have been forced to leave their homes, who have lost friends and lost faith: "When we distributed the relief supplies, children gathered around us. Each of them had a story to tell. Six-year old Sajida was holding a doll in her arms. I felt that it was very important for her to love something and to care for something at a time when she was surrounded by violence and hostility." Nour, who has just turned three, saw one of her friends on the television. Her mother said that her friend had died.
SOS Children's Villages continues to support families in the north of the country who are staying with relatives. Yesterday, baby milk and nappies were again provided for around 200 children. In the meantime, the fuel shortage in the country has noticeably become problematic; hospitals are warning that they will soon be unable to provide life-saving treatment because of the ever increasing power cuts. Zeina Allouche said that the tense situation meant that each day, it was becoming harder to move around within Lebanon.
"We are making a great effort to care for our children at the SOS Children's Villages and SOS Youth Facilities. Everyone is alright so far and all the facilities still have fuel supplies, food and medication", said Zeina Allouche. The situation at SOS Children's Village Ksarnaba remains critical. Staff are organising special activities on a daily basis for the children to try to calm them down in the midst of the noise of war.
Refugee Centre in Syria has closed
The refugee centre that was set up in a public school in Zebdein (near to Damascus) has been closed. The Syrian government organisation that co-ordinates the relief work has decided to provide the refugees with shelter in large centres in various districts around the country. The schools had to be cleared, as it is the beginning of the academic year in Syria. SOS Children's Village Syria will however continue to support families of refugees in the new centres as much as it can.