The United Nation’s Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, Najat Rochdi, announced a $6 million allocation from the Lebanon Humanitarian Fund (LHF) to ensure the continuation of critical health care services affected by the ongoing fuel crisis in the country. This will complement a $4 million allocation from the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) in support of water services as announced last week by the Emergency Relief Coordinator.
The announcement came as severe electricity and fuel shortages have been affecting Lebanon, threatening essential services such as health care and water provision, and putting hundred thousand families on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe.
The new LHF reserve allocation aims to facilitate access to fuel for critical life saving health service providers, including 246 Primary Health Care centers, 554 dispensaries and 65 hospitals, to continue to operate over the next three months. A central warehouse and distribution sites at district level used to maintain cold chain and safe storage of essential health commodities, such as vaccines and other temperature-sensitive critical medicines, will also be supported. The fuel will be directly distributed to the facilities.
“The ongoing fuel crisis has brough additional hardship to the vulnerable populations who have already been suffering from the severe consequences of the compounded crises in the country. With generous contributions from the donors, and as a complement to the CERF allocation, the LHF will provide exceptional time-bound humanitarian support to ensure continuation of critical health services in the country for a maximum of three months”, said Dr. Najat Rochdi, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon.
“The intervention is a one-off emergency support, which will not be extended beyond a maximum duration of three months. The responsibility to ensure uninterrupted provision of basic services including health care and water delivery remains with the Government of Lebanon. All efforts should be expanded to implement sustainable solutions to the on-going energy crisis the earliest possible” added Dr. Rochdi.
The LHF supported interventions are part of the 2021- 2022 Emergency Response Plan for Lebanon (ERP) – a time-bound humanitarian plan aiming to address the immediate humanitarian needs of the most vulnerable populations affected by the ongoing crisis.
The LHF is a Country-based Pooled Fund led by the Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon and managed by OCHA. Initiated in 2014, the Fund supports the strategic delivery of timely, accountable and effective humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable people in Lebanon.
The LHF allocation complements a $4 million allocation from the CERF, which was announced by the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Martin Griffiths, during his visit to Lebanon on 31 August 2021. The CERF funding aims to facilitate access to fuel for water establishments servicing 2.3 million people across Lebanon.