Cooperative partnership – an important part of humanitarian aid

A report of our coordinator Steffi Gentner

by Steffi Gentner,  2013/07/27

Who else if not a participant herself knows about what is most important for on-site operations? The young postgraduate student Steffi Gentner from Konstanz has just come back home from her assignment as a coordinator in Lebanon and talked to us about her experiences on this subject:

Until July 2013, 1,811,867 Syrian refugees have found shelter in the neighboring countries. Data like these can be found in the regularly updated “Inter-agency Information Sharing Portal” of the UN refugee agency. This internet platform contains information collected in cooperation between all governments of the countries which have taken refugees in and 126 other partners in the region. humedica is one of these partners for emergency assistance.

Until July 2013, 625,940 Syrian refugees have found shelter in Lebanon. Given the only 4.2 million inhabitants of Lebanon and the constant flood of refugees, the native population is facing challenges, it can hardly master itself.

In cooperation with the local partner Heart for Lebanon and the American organization Medical Teams International humedica is still providing urgently needed basic medical care in mobile hospital units.

Thus, registered or non-registered refugees have been receiving personal and material help in the surroundings of the town Zahle in the Bekaa valley. The catchment area of these mobile hospitals now comprises 32 of the 220 camps of tents which exist in this region. The camps are mostly situated on fields owned by Lebanese farmers, who rent them to the Syrians. In Lebanon there are no official refugee camps.

In cooperation with UNHCR, International Medical Corps – the implementation partner for UNHCR concerning the health division in this region – and the Lebanese Ministry of Health, one of our teams could carry out an assessment concerning the on-site needs in June.

Besides information concerning the safeguarding of medical care, they calculated a total of 16,000 Syrian refugees in the camps. Apart from humedica, no other organization is providing medical aid in mobile hospitals in these camps.

These figures make some people feel responsible for action. It is not without reason that humedica can look back at a long tradition, which includes the deployment of mostly voluntarily acting doctors and coordinators.

However, empathy alone is not enough to enable efficient help. Another essential element is the cooperative partnership, which must work at all times between all involved actors.

That is why humedica regularly takes part in different Interagency – and Health Working Group Coordination Meetings in Lebanon, in order to avoid for instance the duplication of humanitarian aid, to identify gaps in care and to build up and cultivate a network of fellow campaigners."

In the second part of the report you will read about how important cooperative partnership was for Steffi Gentner’s work in Lebanon and how her efforts for a special family bore fruit. Please continue to support our aid measures for Syrian refugees in Lebanon with a concrete donation. Thank you very much!

      humedica e. V.
      Reference "Syrian refugees"
      Account 47 47
      Bank Code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

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