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Partnering to Meet Urgent Need in Lebanon following Explosion in Beirut

Published 08/12/2020 by Global Communities


In April, PCI announced a merger with international development and humanitarian assistance organization Global Communities. In just a few months, our partnership has quickly grown based on our shared mission, vision and values, and we are already working together to increase the impact of proven programs.

On August 4, a catastrophic explosion rocked Beirut, Lebanon, damaging or destroying thousands of buildings and leaving over 250,000 people displaced and in need of immediate housing repair, food security, and a wide range of basic necessities. PCI and Global Communities have complementary but unique geographic footprints and programmatic expertise to bring to bear on exactly this type of urgent humanitarian need.

PCI has years of experience in disaster response and takes a “Neighborhood Approach” to helping communities build back stronger. This approach was pioneered in the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, when PCI and Global Communities worked side-by-side as project partners to deliver neighborhood-based humanitarian assistance in heavily affected urban areas and to create the conditions for long-term recovery. Global Communities was originally known as the Cooperative Housing Foundation, and for decades, has implemented shelter assistance programs and other housing-related programs in the U.S. and around the world.

While PCI works directly with communities in Africa, Asia and the Americas, including along the US-Mexico border in California, Global Communities has current operations in several countries in the Middle East. Global Communities and the Vitas Group, a Global Communities subsidiary, have worked in Lebanon for more than two decades and have over 200 local employees on the ground. All are safe and accounted for after the blast, and team members immediately began work assisting their neighbors, even as they faced significant damage to their own homes.

To support these efforts, in the days after the explosion, Global Communities launched Li Beirut (For Beirut), a community-based response focused on housing rehabilitation in the very short time before the arrival of winter and rainy season. Drawing on decades of expertise in urban resilience and humanitarian response, our partners will help local residents restore their blast-damaged homes to a safe standard, ensuring vulnerable families can return home.

To learn more and get involved, please visit our partners at Global Communities.