On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, the executive director of UNICEF, NZ, Mrs. Vivien Maidaborn along with Marion Blake, a photographer and UNICEF team Lebanon visited LOST premises in Bedneyel and attended a Merge activity in Hawsh Musraya bringing together more than 100 Lebanese and Syrian youth in a recreational activity.
After introducing UNICEF/LOST partnership objectives and social cohesion approach to NZ senior delegation, LOST introduced two more approaches where Mrs. Blake attended part of a “conflict analysis” workshop organized by LOST and forum ZFD and took part at another workshop on “social cohesion” about Human Rights organized by LOST and the Embassy of the Netherlands. Then UNICEF team headed towards an Informal Tental Settlement (ITS) in Howsh Mosraya to attend a Merge Activity conducted by 35 Lebanese Youth and about 45 Syrian youth in addition to the refugees’ parents, little siblings and residents. The merge program was racing bags between youth participants organized by the Lebanese. LOST then played some traditional Syrian songs and the UNICEF team danced with some Syrian children. Hanadi El Rahim, a 15-year-old Syrian participant also gave a passionate speech greeting LOST and UNICEF for the initiative and stressing the Right to learn for everybody.
Such a visit strengthens this productive partnership with UNICEF and exchanges experience which will in turn improves the quality of services offered to both Syrian refugees and the most vulnerable hosting community who are seeking assistance.