Lebanon

Safeguarding fundamental rights for children from both refugee and host populations

Facts and figures

  • Total population: 5.9 million
  • Total population under 18: 2.3 million
  • Children affected by conflict: 1.1 million
  • Number of War Child projects in 2019: Seven
  • Number of implementing partner organisations: 36
  • Number of partners providing funding: Seven
  • Total child participants: 17,307 (8,350 girls and 8,957 boys)
  • Total adult participants: 4,537 (3,721 women and 816 men)

National Situation

Lebanon hosts the highest proportion of refugees of any country in the world. This figure includes some 1.5 displaced people from Syria - nearly half of whom are children. The country is also home to 208,000 Palestinian refugees who mainly reside in Lebanon’s 12 refugee camps.

This significant population increase has had an overwhelming effect on the country’s already weak infrastructure and economy. Some 1.5 million Lebanese citizens are below the poverty line - and classified as in need of humanitarian assistance. This has created significant tension between host communities and more recent arrivals.

Recent political developments have seen increasing numbers of Syrian refugees return home. In total, 14,700 refugees returned to the Syrian Arab Republic in 2018. Yet for now the backlash from the Syrian conflict - particularly in the form of enduring humanitarian needs and terror attacks - continues to pose challenges.

Nine-year-old Lulu and her family escaped the ongoing violence in Syria five years ago. After a long journey they finally arrived in Lebanon - where they came into contact with War Child

“Here I can play, draw and make friends again. I’m very happy here."
Lulu (9) from Syria

Situation of Children

Children in Lebanon from all communities grow up in a climate of insecurity. At least 1.4 million children are classified as ‘at risk’ of threats including physical violence and separation from family.

An estimated one third of Syrian families do not have official refugee status - leaving their children vulnerable to exclusion from education and other services. Child labour and early marriage represent further threats to their wellbeing.

Refugee children - from both Syrian and Palestinian communities - also face significant barriers to accessing education. More than half (54 per cent) of all Syrian children and youth are currently out of school. And in total some 1.2 million children - including from host communities - currently have little or no access to education.

What We Do

War Child is active across all governorates of Lebanon. We are presently in more than 40 locations - including the most vulnerable areas of the country. We work in support of children from host communities as well as children from Syrian and Palestinian refugee communities.

Our community-based integrated approach combines psychosocial support, child protection and education to enhanced effect. We work to enhance the capacities of local Community Based Organisations to further extend our impact. We also strive to boost the inclusion of children with disabilities in all our programming.

We work to reach as many people as possible through our programming - including parents and other important adults in children’s lives.

Nour Veilige Plek Libanon

Nour from Syria is playing with her friends in one of our Child Friendly Spaces in Lebanon

Photo: War Child

Our Projects

Time to Be a Child

Project to set up a network of Safe Spaces where vulnerable children can play, learn and develop in peaceful environments.

Back to the Future

Major consortium-led education initiative for refugee children affected by the crisis in Syria.

Sports and Humanitarian Assistance (SaHA) 2

Coalition project utilising soccer to bring children and young people from Lebanon's different communities together.

Can’t Wait to Learn

Global programme to provide conflict-affected children with quality education - no matter where they live. Children play curriculum-based educational games on tablets to learn in an effective and fun way.

SHEILD - A Protective Environment for Adolescent Growth

Initiative utilising education, protection and advocacy activities to ensure adolescent girls and boys are better protected from violence, abuse, exploitation and neglect.

Caregiver Support Intervention

Project to strengthen parental wellbeing and enhance parenting skills to improve the psychosocial wellbeing of Syrian refugee children.

Supporting Vulnerable Girls and Boys to Access Education

Initiative to provide 2,500 disadvantaged children under the age of five with early childhood education (ECE) opportunities.

Voices of Children

A New Life for Nour

Nour was forced to flee the conflict in Syria at the age of just seven. The violence escalated until her family couldn’t take it anymore. She now lives in Lebanon where she has begun to process her traumatic experiences.

Nour vividly remembers her life in Syria - including the bombings and the noise of overhead planes. She recalls stopping at her grandmother's house to say goodbye. “My grandma made me dessert,” Nour recalls.

“I cried with every last spoonful I ate because my grandma had made it for me - and I had no idea when, or if, I would ever see her again."
Nour from Syria

Nour struggled with upon arriving in Lebanon. She missed her extended family and felt a very long way from 'home'. Her life began to improve once she began attending her local Social Development Centre - where War Child provides psychosocial support for conflict-affected children.

Nour met her new best friend Raghad at the centre. The two of them are inseparable - and Nour now feels like a normal twelve-year-old again. “Raghad is more like a sister than a friend,” Nour says.