Marists of Champagnat: The fratelli project continues to work with children and young people despite the crisis
In spite of the political crisis in Lebanon and the social protests that have been taking place since October 2019, the community of Fratelli continues to work and develop free socio-educational programmes in favour of hundreds of children and young people, poor and refugees, thanks to the generosity of the donors, and the efforts of the laypeople, volunteers and De La Salle and Marist Brothers of the association.
In the context of the protests that began in October, due to the political situation, the associations and centres of the Fratelli project had to close their doors for some time. They were also forced to postpone the formation of Resilience Tutors until 2020, and even to postpone the visit of some donors.
From November 6, there was a certain tranquillity and classes resumed. Social mobilizations were concentrated in some cities, especially in Beirut, but did not affect the development of activity in schools and social centres. Although it had to be stopped on November 13 and 25.
In October, November and December two courses (60 hours each) were held for young adults in partnership with the Italian NGO CESVI.
At the end of January, following the decree for the formation of a new cabinet of ministers, the demonstrators returned to the streets to express their rejection of the government, and as a result of the clashes between the security forces and the demonstrators, hundreds of people were injured. In view of the difficult situation, some schools in Beirut and the surrounding area had to close for a couple of days, but Fratelli Rmeileh has tried to continue its activities in a normal way.
For now, in the midst of the social crisis, there is a period of calm.
In Lebanon, one third of the 4.5 million Lebanese live below the poverty line. In addition, the country is home to 1.5 million refugees, the vast majority of whom are Syrian, and the war in Syria continues.
The Fratelli Project was created in 2016 in Lebanon by the Congregations of the Brothers of the Christian Schools and the Marist Brothers in response to the emerging and urgent needs of the most vulnerable children and young people at risk (Read the letter of the Superiors General). It mainly serves Syrian and Iraqi children displaced by the wars in the Middle East.