United States of America Provides $45 Million Lifeline for 295,000 Refugees in Lebanon

Published January 4, 2019
Last Updated March 20, 2019

BEIRUT – This week, 295,000 Syrian refugees in Lebanon will receive US$27 each to buy the food they need in January. As part of a $45 million contribution from the United States of America, the World Food Programme (WFP) in Lebanon will be able to feed those individuals until the end of March.

In Lebanon, WFP transfers cash for food to the most vulnerable refugees on an electronic card. Those e-cards can only be used in specifically contracted shops, of which there are 500 throughout the country. The e-card program helps families maintain their dignity as they can choose what food to buy. It also provides a substantial boost to the Lebanese economy. Since 2012, over $1.5 billion has been directly injected into the local economy through the network of shops.

“I can only extend my heartfelt thanks to the United States of America and its people for this generous contribution,” said Abdallah Alwardat, Country Director and Representative of WFP in Lebanon. “During winter, this contribution means even more to the refugees who depend on our food assistance as a survival lifeline.”

The annual results of a survey of refugees’ needs in Lebanon, the Vulnerability Assessment of Syrian Refugees (VASyR), was published in December. The report confirmed that one third of refugees are either moderately or severely food insecure. Without sustained monthly cash assistance for food, that figure would only increase. When food security levels increase, families are forced to adopt extreme coping measures to free up cash to buy food. Those decisions are often at the detriment of each family’s well-being.

WFP requires $27 million each month to continue its food assistance activities for the most vulnerable Syrian and Lebanese populations. 

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The United Nations World Food Programme – saving lives in emergencies and changing lives for millions through sustainable development. WFP works in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.


For more information please contact (email address: firstname.lastname@wfp.org):

Abeer Etefa, WFP/Cairo, Tel. +20225281730, Mob. +201066634352

Reem Nada, WFP/Cairo, Tel. +20225281730, Mob. +201066634522

Edward Johnson, WFP/Beirut, Mob. + 961 76320761

Francis Mwanza, WFP/London, Tel.  +44 (0)20 3857 7411, Mob. +44 (0)7968 008474

Challiss McDonough, WFP/Washington, Tel. +1-202-653-1149, Mob. +1-202-774-4026

Steve Taravella, WFP/New York, Tel. +1-646-556-6909, Mob.  +1-202-770-5993