Hi, I'm writing to you from Beirut where I've been working with refugees - mostly Syrian and Palestinian - for the past few months. On a recent trip to the Bekaa Valley in November I found myself 'freezing' despite wearing multiple layers of clothing. The families I visited at a refugee camp/settlement in the Bekaa had on a sweatshirt at most, and the majority of the kids were running around barefoot or in flip flops... even in the frigid temperatures. It's now December and the temperature is dropping. I realise it may seem silly raising $$ to buy clothes when most of us presumably have many clothes we don't need + could donate - and I urge you to do so in your local communities! - but the reality is that it's difficult getting the clothes in to Lebanon from abroad as the cost of shipping the clothes + clearing customs is equal to buying, hence setting up this platform to raise as much money as possible. Every single dollar raised will be spent buying an assortment of warm - and durable - winter clothes (coats, scarves, boots, hats etc.) for refugees without discrimination of any sort - gender, age, and ethnicity included. I'll be buying the clothes myself, and handing them out with the help of an NGO called Social Support Society since they are familiar with refugee communities living in camp settlements throughout the Bekaa Valley and will be able to point me in the right direction. I'll keep you posted with photos and progress reports if you would like me to, via email (I'll reach out to you if you post/message me your email address). Lastly, I urge you to give generously during this holiday season as we gather with our friends and loved ones in warmth; the living situation of refugees in the Bekaa Valley - they tend to be Syrians who have fled the horrific civil war just across the border - is dire, and every dollar will make a difference towards trying to 'help' them in whatever small way we can.
**FYI some of the communities within Bekaa that I plan on distributing clothes to include: Majdal Anjar, Bar Elias, Ghazzah, Kamed Al Loz, and Sawiri.**
N.B. Planning to purchase gear from a Lebanese 'Primark' equivalent, and estimating spending roughly $50 / person. Will update with store details + approx. cost per person once I have more info. Rest assured not a single penny will go to waste and all will be spent as the need is THAT great. Thanks!
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