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Support for educational programs at the Caritas Lebanon school for handicapped children in Zahle

The Centre Patriarche Sf CPS-Zahlé is a school for children and teenagers with special needs, run by Caritas Liban in Zahlé, the Beqaa Valley. It holds, among others, craft, gastronomy, art and language classes and workshops for students and their parents to help them achieve social, educational and professional independence and to promote the general integration into the labour market.

The system of assistance for the disabled in Lebanon is insufficient. Without any support from such organisations as the Centre Patriarche Sf CPS, the majority of the disabled have little prospect of finding a job. Moreover, the Beqaa Valley mostly comprises farmland with infrastructure saturation lower than, for instance, in the central province of Mount Lebanon. Zahla is the biggest urban centre in this area. Financing the purchase of the equipment for two new classes will make it possible to admit additional students, as the demand is much higher now and the waiting list is longer.

Support for educational programs at the Caritas Lebanon school for handicapped children in Zahle

The project is scheduled to be implemented from 1 July to 31 December 2016 in cooperation with the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Beirut and its local partner - Caritas Lebanon. From the beginning of its operation, Caritas Liban has provided the unemployed, the disabled, the children and the elderly from poor families, the homeless, the sick as well as the immigrants and refugees with assistance. The organisation also provides humanitarian aid to the victims of armed conflicts and disasters. Caritas Liban tries to ensure that those most in need and deprived of access to public health services receive basic health care.

The objective of the project is to allow the admission of additional children of up to twelve years of age in the areas where the needs are highest. At present, the school has no infrastructure allowing it to increase the number of students. To this end, two rooms in the school are to be converted into classrooms. The project activities will include the repair and construction works as well as the purchase of equipment. 

The children, who could be admitted to the school as soon as the two new classrooms are ready, will be the direct beneficiaries of the project. In each year of the school operation, the number of children will amount to 40-50.

Support for educational programs at the Caritas Lebanon school for handicapped children in Zahle

The project was implemented from 1 August to 30 December 2016. As part of the project, the repair and construction works were carried out in two rooms. Moreover, the equipment, such as desks, chairs, carpets, laptops and TVs as well as basic school supplies, was purchased. Converting two rooms into classrooms for children with disabilities helped to lower the number of students in the existing classes and to admit children from the waiting list. The school has now more opportunities to admit children in the subsequent years, approximately 40-50 children in each school year.

The project was fully funded by the Polish Aid and its value amounted to approximately PLN 104,000 (USD 25,000). For the purposes of calculation, the following exchange rate was applied: USD 1 = PLN 4.1793.