Lebanon + 2 more

WFP Lebanon Country Brief, October 2019


In Numbers

730,717 people assisted in October 2019

US$ 23.5 m cash-based transfers made

US$27.7 m six months December 2019 – May 2020) net funding requirements

Operational Updates

• Since the 17 October, Lebanon has been witnessing a civil unrest with thousands taking the streets to protest against increasing tax hikes and deteriorating economic situation. Since then, the Prime Minister has resigned and no transitional government has been formed. The situation remains volatile as failure to implement urgent economic reforms could cause the devaluation of the Lebanese currency and precipitate in a very serious economic crisis, resulting in scarcity of basic commodities and fuel, inflation, and deepening social crisis/unrest.

• Despite the challenges faced due to the ongoing civil unrest, in October WFP has assisted a total of 730,717 beneficiaries through cash-based transfer modalities amounting to US$23.5 million. The people assisted were: Syrian refugees, Palestinian refugees, refugees of other nationalities, vulnerable Lebanese through the National Poverty Targeting Programme (NPTP), Syrian and Lebanese through livelihoods activities, and children through the school feeding programme.

• Monthly cash assistance to refugees as well as vulnerable Lebanese remained unaffected for October as the cash transfer was loaded onto e-cards on 5 October, and 95 percent of this amount was withdrawn from ATMs or redeemed in shops before the civil unrest began. Moreover, the distribution of cards for the newly-targeted households for the November retargeting exercise for refugees was completed before the unrest began. However, most Livelihoods, School Meals, and WFP biometric validation activities for refugees were severely disrupted after 17 October due to closure of schools and roadblocks throughout Lebanon. The beneficiary outreach in November will likely be affected. Card issuance and distribution for new Livelihoods participants have also been delayed due to the inability of staff members to reach offices, closure of banks, and roadblocks.