Government of Japan and UN Women partner to address escalating socio-economic needs in Lebanon
Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday 18 May 2022 (UN Women, Government of Japan)— The Government of Japan and UN Women in Lebanon have signed an agreement to provide $1,294,388.00 USD to support vulnerable Lebanese women and Syrian refugees to meet urgent socio-economic needs. This support will allow vulnerable women of any nationality, and their families, to access emergency livelihood opportunities, while ensuring access to quality affordable sanitary products and hot meals.
Employment opportunities will be created through direct support to female-led social enterprises/production units, which will be producing the sanitary products and hot meals. The support aims to contribute to women’s food security, to addressing period poverty, and to bolstering women’s engagement in the economy.
Under this framework, more than 10,000 women and family members will be supported, and 54,480 hygienic menstrual products and hot meals will be distributed to those in need – seeking to both address in immediate terms, the urgent needs of people, while also investing in Lebanon’s productive sectors.
“Japan has always been keen on advancing women’s economic empowerment and autonomy across Lebanon. As Khalil Gebran once said nations and civilizations are only built on women's shoulders. In the framework of the Lebanese compounded crisis, this integrated intervention funded by the Government of Japan will help improve women’s livelihoods through job creation and sustainable income, all while combatting period poverty, and investing in Lebanon’s national production. In these challenging times, the recognition of the importance of women’s contribution to the local economic recovery has become increasingly significant” remarked His Excellency OKUBO Takeshi, Ambassador of Japan to Lebanon.
Lebanon’s economic, political and social crisis has resulted in an estimate of 74% of the population living below the poverty line as of March 2021. Resulting from decades of structural gender discrimination, women have been amongst the hardest hit by the crisis, experiencing disproportionately high levels of food insecurity and othered gendered impacts, including increased gender-based violence and dramatically increasing rates of period poverty. Syrian refugee households have become highly dependent on humanitarian aid, especially female headed households – with 57% of female-headed households recently reporting that their main source of income support was from humanitarian organizations. Moreover, Lebanon is suffering from acute levels of period poverty with more than 700,000 women2 forecasted to be unable to meet the most basic hygienic and safety needs needed to preserve their dignity and livelihood.
“We are grateful to the Government of Japan for its continued support in responding to the urgent needs of women and girls in Lebanon”, remarked Ms. Rachel Dore-Weeks, Head of UN Women in Lebanon.
This collaboration started by the end of March 2022 and will run until March 2023.
Roula Rached, UN Women: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Based on a poverty rate of 50% and 1.4 million Lebanese women using sanitary pads.