As humanitarian needs increase and expand to all vulnerable communities across Lebanon in 2020, and the operational environment continues to be challenging due to COVID-19 lockdowns, it is essential to maintain access to multi-sector services for those in need, while prioritizing efficient and accountable referrals which connect service providers together and allow to avoid gaps and duplication in services. The 4 August 2020 Beirut Blast exacerbated the needs of vulnerable communities in Beirut, and resulted in a shift in the humanitarian response both at strategic and operational level with new coordination mechanisms falling outside of the LCRP framework as well as high presence of new actors in Beirut in addition to the already existing ones who were not systematically involved in humanitarian coordination prior to the Blast. This report focuses on the gaps and challenges in referral pathways and inter-sector coordination specifically in Beirut after the 4 August 2020 Blast, and presents recommendations to improve access to multi-sector services of vulnerable communities. It then looks towards the upcoming winter storms, which occur every year in Lebanon and are likely to see even higher needs this year with the new 2020 context, and advocate to focus on efficient referrals as a preparedness measure in order to effectively address the holistic needs of vulnerable communities likely to be affected by the storms.
Findings from this report are based on quantitative analysis of referral data from July-October 2020 on the Referral Information Management System (RIMS). RIMS was created by DRC in 2017 to provide a common platform for service providers across sectors to manage, track and respond to referrals, as well as qualitative analysis from Focus Group Discussions conducted with service providers.
This report has been developed by the RIMS Team and complements the RIMS Snapshots produced every four months to highlight trends in referrals. The next analytical Snapshot and report will be published in January 2021 and March 2021 respectively.