Charity Home > SOS News > Middle East Crisis: The trauma of war

The trauma of war


Sixty people, including 37 children, were reported dead on Sunday 30 July when a building in Qana, where displaced families sheltering, was heavily attacked.

Fear and anxiety were the prevailing emotions in Lebanon early that morning; numbness at seeing children having to witness, endure and ultimately fall victim to the horrors of war...

As of 1 August, 620 people had been killed and 3,225 people injured. The number of displaced people has reached 700,000, with the majority seeking refuge in Beirut, the nearby Chouf Mountains, Tyre, Sidon, and the Alea region.

Although most displaced people are reported to be staying with relatives and friends, estimates suggest that 125,000 are in temporary shelter in schools and other public buildings across the country.

"I miss my little toy left behind at my home. They told me that our home was destroyed. I wonder whether the toy is dead like those children I saw on TV this morning" said Yara, a 4 year-old-girl now sheltering with her family in a school in the north of the country.

Distribution of clothing by SOS staff in Lebanon

In response to this humanitarian crisis, SOS Children continues to extend relief assistance to displaced families, while at the same time ensuring the safety of the larger SOS family - children and youths as well as former children and staff.

As well as providing for the physical and emotional needs of the children in its care, the SOS Children’s Village in Sferai, near Sidon, has been working to improve the situation of the displaced children and their families living in the local area.

Beyond distributing baby milk, food and nappies to some 150 children over 20 days, staff from the village have also been distributing donations in kind, such as mattresses, bed covers, essential drugs and clothes that the village had in stock. Even the children have contributed, donating toys to children displaced by the war.

In the north, the SOS Family Strengthening Programme continues to offer assistance to displaced families staying with relatives. The SOS Children’s Village in Kfarhay has so far distributed over 200 mattresses as well as items of clothing to 135 families and their children.

Despite the very limited scale of the relief assistance programme, the efforts of SOS Children have been greatly appreciated by the displaced families.

The Director of SOS Children’s Village Ksarnaba, who was away on holiday when the troubles began, finally made it back to the village on Sunday 30 July. Having arrived at Damascus Airport just one hour before the main road between Syria and Lebanon was severely hit and then closed, Mr. Dirani had to then spend the night at the SOS Children’s Village in Qodsaya in the Syrian capital before setting off on foot the next morning for Ksarnaba.

Back to the Middle East Crisis news page

Relevant Countries: Israel, Lebanon, Palestinian Territories, Syria.

Schools Wikipedia Return to Schools Wikipedia Home page