These times are incredibly difficult for millions of people around the world. Since the spread of the dangerous COVID-19 virus, life has changed for all of us.
But the virus does not differentiate between rich and poor, borders, ethnicities, age, or gender. And it hits those that have the least possibilities to stay safe and healthy the hardest.
In the Syrian refugee camp in Bar Elias, where Acronis funded a school in 2019, the situation is immensely threatening. Already before the spread of the virus, Lebanon has been in a massive crisis. People feared national bankruptcy; unemployment rates were rising as fast as food prices, and over 40% of Lebanese live below the subsistence level. And the rejection of Syrian refugees increased because they are blamed for being a huge burden during these difficult times.
The COVID-19 pandemic makes the situation significantly worse. On Saturday, March 21, 230 cases and 4 deaths of COVID-19 patients have been reported. People are very anxious that the virus will spread fastly. Especially in refugee camps, where people live next to each other in tents, and where the hygienic situation is insufficient, COVID-19 could cause a large number of deaths and suffering.
A spokesperson of Zeltschule e.V., our implementing partner on ground, draws the menacing picture of the situation in the Syrian refugee camp in Bar Eilas: "Yesterday we were able to distribute soaps as people were asked to wash their hands and to stay at home. It's really challenging when a home is only separated from others through tarpaulins in a small space. Isolation beds or even resuscitation places are unreachable."
The school must remain open - the children cannot go into quarantine. That is why protective measures have already been introduced - the school is regularly disinfected, and protective masks are worn for lessons. Our local partners are trying to bring more and more hygiene products and also water.
In addition to the severe danger of inadequate medical care, the camp in Bar Elias also faces the problem of lacking drinking water and sufficient food supplies. One does not want to imagine the cruel situation of people getting sick of COVID-19, and not having the chance of drinking water or eating food, because there is not enough supply.
In these times, we have to show international solidarity. The corona pandemic hits us hard, but some people will not have access to medical care, and might not have adequate food and water supply. If you can - help them by donating to Zeltschule e.V.. They will use the money to increase hygienic measures through the distribution of soap and disinfectants and to provide drinking water.
Don't forget, you can make a difference, even by a small donation. Help people stay healthy in this worldwide crisis. Only together can we fight the dangers of COVID-19.
Click here to donate directly to Zeltschule e.V.