"I FEEL LIKE WE LIVE IN A REAL HOME NOW"
Ahlam’s husband makes a million a month – in Lebanase pounds that is. Unfortunately it only works out to about $57 in Canadian money.
The mother of two in Bourj Hammoud, a suburb of Beirut, says “It’s been around six months or more since we last ate meat. We can’t afford to buy it since it got expensive.”
For Ahlam and many other Lebanese, the economic situation has been dire since 2019 when Lebanon plunged into a financial crisis. Many have lost jobs or are barely hanging on.
Things were made worse when the huge explosion hit the Port of Beirut in August 2020.
“After the explosion all the windows and doors were broken,” she says of their home, located on the top floor of a three-storey building.
The family fixed what they could, but there was more to be done. Especially worrisome was the roof, which was also badly damaged by the blast.
Unable to afford the needed repairs on her husband’s salary, they received help from World Vision, a member of the Humanitarian Coalition.
With funds from the Lebanon Crisis appeal, World Vision repaired the roof, replaced the old ceiling, installed a new ceramic floor, painted the walls and did other needed repairs. The family also received food and hygiene items.
“It was really important to fix the roof, it was becoming impossible to live in the house because in the winter there was a lot of leakage and in the summer the house becomes too hot,” Ahlam says.
“The new tiles on the floor make it much easier to clean the house since it was difficult cleaning a concrete floor,” she adds.
Thanks to the support she received, she says, “I feel like we live in a real home now.”