Lebanon: Faces from Arsal

20 October 2016

Two years ago, Arsal, a town on Lebanon's north-eastern border with Syria, was unknown to most Lebanese. Today, it serves as a daily reminder of the Syrian crisis next door and its consequences for Lebanon.

The town of 35,000 residents has taken in more than 70,000 Syrian refugees. Sporadic violence has plagued the town for the past three years, leaving people dead, injured or displaced.

With poor infrastructure and limited access to basic services, life for both residents and refugees is dire. Many children are left with no education and those who fall ill struggle to receive the health care they need.

The upcoming winter will add to the woes of the people there, in particular the refugees, many of whom are living in tents and makeshift homes.

Last year, together with the Qatar Red Crescent, the ICRC insulated the shelters of some of the Syrian refugees who are living in informal settlements.

This year, before the cold sets in, the ICRC has started renovating several of the run-down buildings where refugees are living.