In Bekaa Valley, Mercy Corps has distributed hygiene kits, tablets to purify water, buckets and jerry cans to refugees. Mercy Corps will be distributing over 6,000 winter clothes and over 4,000 vouchers for winter clothes in Bekaa this month. Mercy Corps is also providing psychosocial support services to children and adolescents in the region, and has reached over 2,000 beneficiaries to date.
The amount of assistance needed here is overwhelming. The United Nations estimates that if fighting in Syria continues the refugee figure could reach 1.1 million by June 2013. Funding is short and is hampering our ability, and our peer humanitarian organizations, to provide the support these refugees so desperately need.
At the end of the day, I left with a lump in my throat. We saw many tears and a vacuum of feeling from fathers who knew they had just walked away from every worldly possession they owned -- knowing it was lost to the war. But I can't say I felt desperate or hopeless. I am an optimist and have to be in order to do this job.