Widad Taleb, a business student at the Lebanese American University (LAU), decided to launch her own campaign to feed families in need during the lockdown. She is single-handedly collecting donations from the online community to prepare and distribute food boxes to families in Akkar.
The961 got in touch with Widad to find out how she has been managing to feed all these families on her own.
When asked what had made her initiate that endeavor, this is what she told us:
“To be honest, when I saw a politician from Akkar post a challenge in which he had to shave one side of his head or something absurd like that, I realized that if he has time to do things like that and isn’t worried about the starving people in his town, then there’s a big problem.”
For context, Akkar is Lebanon’s poorest governance, according to a report by OCHA.
“I was inspired to post a video on my Instagram page- stressing that I’m independent and don’t belong to any organization- to collect money from my followers to help distribute food boxes to families in need.”
The box consists of rice, lentils, pasta, beans, flour, tomatoes, sugar, and several other essential items. “Each box costs me between 30,000 – 34,000 LBP,” she said.
She told The961 that she’s being completely transparent about the donations and posts a list of contributions daily on her Instagram. People who would like to donate can do so anonymously or have their names shown on the box being donated.
“I didn’t expect a lot of people to share my video. It was shared by Gino Raidy, Yara Khawam, Paula Nawfal, Polleksandra, and so many more pages that I can’t even remember them all, but they were very influential.”
Widad has been able to collect around 2,000,000 LBP and $1000 USD from donations in one week. This means that one person’s initiative can help over 100 families a week.
She started by focusing on Akkar but says she has a database of over 1,000 families from all over Lebanon whom she can help if she’s able to and if the campaign expands.
This is living proof that no effort is too small to make a difference.