Fires have been tremendously breaking out in different areas in Lebanon: Mechref, Naameh, Damour, and Aley in the Shouf region of Mount Lebanon; Kornet Al Hamra in Metn; Qana, Bafliyeh, Chahabiyah, Burj Rahhal, and Srifa in the South; Akkar in North of Lebanon.
The causes of the wildfires are undefined still, with most speculations dwelling around the sudden unusual rise in temperature with wind speeds reaching up to 50 kilometers per hour.
While Lebanon has been allocating all its forces to stop the insane blaze, Cyprus and Greece sent a fire fighting plane each, the UNIFIL is helping in the South, and Jordan sent on Tuesday evening two units of its Royal Air Force Super Puma aircraft. Meanwhile calls for evacuations from at-risk regions kept ongoing until Tuesday afternoon.
The Lebanese citizens have also taken upon themselves to help with how and what they can. In different areas of Lebanon, individuals have offered their own houses for the families affected, including so far a house in Dahyeh (Beirut), 5 houses in Sarafand (South of Lebanon), and apartments in Shmustar (Beqaa) in the Shouf region.
On a bigger scale, two real-estate owners, who also own the media blog Wadipress, have announced the opening of their thirty-nine apartments located in Tyre and Aitit, to shelter the people escaping their Southern towns.
“Ever since we posted about the apartments, our phone has not stopped ringing,” a spokesman from Wadipress said. “We are not counting, but more than 15 people have called asking for shelter in less than an hour.” The apartments, which were unfurnished as of this morning, are 170m in size and can fit up to 30 people per one apartment, in such an emergency.
These two Lebanese have donated their 39 apartments, as they felt humanly responsible enough to help the people affected by the wildfires, and the families who watched their own houses burn down to the ground.
“We are working alongside the Red Cross and United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction UNDRR to try to answer as many calls as possible,” the spokesman from Wadipress said. “Municipalities are also referring us to people affected. Help in various ways have been offered and we are receiving all kinds of aid that are being sent out to the municipality of Mechref, where we will be present today.”
People and stores have been offering food, clothes, money, and first aid donation to the families affected. Many NGOs like FoodBlessed, Adyan, and Lebanese Food Bank are collecting donations for the families. Wadipress has confirmed that the apartments will remain open as long as the people are in need of them. In the Chouf region, similar action has been taken:
Lebanon all stands in prayer for all the families, forests and wildlife affected. Our thoughts and prayers as well for our firefighters, army, and volunteers at the forefront of the blazing flames.
Blessed be Lebanon and its people!