Save Our Students (S.O.S)
Working for a Lebanon Where Every Child Can Grow, Learn and Lead .
S.O.S is a social empowerment program aiming at putting a halt to the fast deterioration of the Lebanese educational sector.
The program’s first phase focuses on reversing skyrocketing illiteracy and dropout rates among students. It also aims at reversing the decrease in student retainment rates at schools and at supporting Lebanese teachers.
The second phase will aim at helping Lebanese youth find the resources to be proactive in their communities and assist them in university and/or career placements.
The program will be implemented on the ground by Societe St Vincent de Paul & Ajialouna. For decades, both NGO’s have put education, “youth/girls/women’s empowerment” and “gender equality” at the forefront of their missions.
Our fundraising strategy combines a three-pronged approach consisting of grassroots (individual donors), charitable (international NGOs & foundations) and philanthropic / corporate channels.
THIS IS A LEBANESE EDUCATION EMERGENCY.
Years of political turmoil, hyperinflation, skyrocketing poverty & unemployment rates and a COVID pandemic have left the Lebanese educational system on the brink of a total collapse, threatening in its way the future of the country’s future.
After two years of being stuck at home, many children headed back to class and reunited with their friends this fall. But not every child was so lucky.
The Lebanese currency lost over 90% of its value, poverty rate is over 79%, employment rate is over 70% and the majority of Lebanese are in need… Parents can barely afford to buy basic food staples for their kids.
Dropout and illiteracy rates are on the increase simply because people cannot afford to send or keep their kids in schools. The majority of these kids may never return.
With each day that passes, more children go hungry and become vulnerable to lack of education, early marriage, and violence. Many are forced into child labor as low wage laborers.
We’re facing the biggest Lebanese education emergency of our lifetime.
WHAT WE’RE CALLING FOR .
WHY EDUCATION MATTERS .
Early learning is a major indicator of future success. COVID-19 and the situation in Lebanon has disrupted the education of an entire generation of children. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, thousands of Lebanese children were out of school, mainly girls. For the thousands other students that were enrolled, many were not learning.
In areas of poverty, girls are more vulnerable to lack of education, forced labor, early marriage, and violence.
For any child, suddenly being cut off from school, their friends and their normality can be hard. For vulnerable children, many of whom were already behind, it’s devastating. School is a lifeline for so many kids. When home isn’t safe, school is a security haven. When a student is living in poverty, school is hope for a better future.
Some private schools in Lebanon have laid off higher-paid teachers, around 40% of staff, to save money, but as time went on many others left “en masse” on their own accord to other neighboring countries in search of better opportunities.
With your help, we can educate Lebanese students who may not otherwise have the chance to learn. changing the course of their lives, their children’s lives and the future of their communities and the country as a whole.
Will You Stand with Us?
S.O.S - The Program
The program will be implemented on the ground by two internationally vetted NGO’s; SSVP & Ajialouna. Both NGO’s have put “youth/girls/women’s empowerment” and “gender equality” at the forefront of their missions for decades.
The program will not, under no circumstance, fund any school that is directly or indirectly involved with any political party or individual as we would like to remain politically neutral.
In order to ensure proper accounting and transparency, we will require progress and final written reports that address how funds were used and ensure that funds were used for the purposes for which they were intended. Those reports will be posted on each involved NGO website accordingly.
The program participating NGOs reserve the ultimate authority to use any contributions at their discretion and only for purposes consistent with the mission of this program; assisting Lebanese students and teachers. Special consideration will be given to sizable/philanthropic donations.
Funds will be spread equitably among student applicants, regardless of gender, religion, sect or geographical location. Priority will be given according to financial need of the applicant family.
Each student recipient will be required to give back to the community by participating (if physically able) in ten hours of community outreach activity. Those activities will teach and allow children to engage in communities in different geographical areas than theirs where they can meet new friends, learn civic duties and serve the country.
As a pre-condition to the issuance of a charitable contribution, all involved administrators and NGOs in this program certify that they are in compliance with all laws, statutes, and regulations restricting U.S. persons from dealing with any individuals, entities, or groups subject to OFAC sanctions.
We will conduct pre-grant inquiries (due diligence) on any potential recipient school and will ensure that they comply with all applicable US laws which include, but are not limited to, all OFAC-administered sanctions programs. The recipient organization and related entities will be checked against all government web-based watch lists of banned entities and individuals.
We will also conduct the following to verify and ensure that funds are used appropriately and for its intended purposes:
1. assuring that donors and recipients do not appear on OFAC’s master list of Specially Designated Nationals (the “SDN List”), maintained on OFAC’s website at https://sanctionssearch.ofac.treas.gov/ and are not otherwise subject to OFAC sanctions;
2. obtaining the physical address, phone number, mailing address, and website, relationships with other organizations, financial standing (annual report, banking information) which includes past and present, and governance of each school involved.
3. conducting a reasonable search of publicly available information to determine whether the recipient is suspected of activity relating to terrorism, including terrorist financing or other support
4. with respect to key employees, members of the governing board, or other senior management at the recipient’s schools, and for their key employees at their different locations, we will, to the extent reasonable, obtain the full name in English, in Arabic, and any acronym or other names used; nationality; citizenship; current country of residence; and place and date of birth;
5. As a pre-condition to the issuance of a charitable contribution, we will require the recipient to certify that they are in compliance with all laws, statutes, and regulations restricting U.S. persons from dealing with any individuals, entities, or groups subject to OFAC sanctions.
SSVP Lebanon is a non-governmental association, founded in 1860. Based in Beirut, SSVP has 49 Branches (Conferences) spread nationwide.
The association’s volunteers (Vincentians) are committed to serve the poor and deprived.
Services offered aim to meet needs and to promote the integral dignity of the deprived. They involve education, health, social welfare , in addition to income generating projects.
SSVP established Saint Vincent de Paul school in 1861, two preschool nurseries, three vocational schools and an after-school center.
The association operates numerous medical and dental clinics, in addition to one mobile clinic.
It also owns and operates two full pledged elderly homes and a memory care center is currently under construction. In addition, SSVP conferences organize and offer weekly free meals and entertainment to senior citizens.
Sustainable and income generating projects have been in operation for more than 29 years; these include: Beekeeping, Tree plantations, Lavender & Aromatic plants nurseries, Sewing and Embroidery Ateliers, Pastry & Catering Kitchens, etc.. These income producing projects employ over 200 disadvantaged people, mainly women.
Ajialouna is a women-led nonprofit charitable organization committed to improving lives and supporting the underprivileged youth, women and elderly populations across a dynamic and ever-changing Lebanon. Working across our branches, and informed by a vast network of local volunteers and partners, Ajialouna capitalizes on the value of its female leadership and 26 years of on the ground experience. We address the critical issues affecting impoverished Lebanese communities head-on by ensuring access to quality healthcare and expanding educational opportunity. We have an ever-lasting commitment to no hunger by providing food security, increasing social resilience and empowering women. All this while working to promote local, regional and international cooperation to achieve long lasting resilience and opportunities for generations to come.
Lebanese Empowered Against Poverty (LEAP) is a non-political, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides aid to the needy in Lebanon. Our mission, duty, and purpose is to alleviate poverty in Lebanon- Address, educate, coordinate, and provide aid and relief to Lebanon’s most impoverished people at local levels through collaborations with local US, International, and vetted Lebanese NGOs thereby giving these affected communities the opportunity to become self-reliant. We believe the diaspora can have a huge impact to improve the future of Lebanon and the Lebanese people. It is by bringing together the diaspora and channeling its potential through projects on the ground in Lebanon that we can build a resilient country that can serve all its people.
Save Our Students (S.O.S)
Thank YOU for Your Support! Help Lebanese students by spreading this message among your circle of friends and family and urge them to do the same… Crowd funding goes a long way & every dollar matters!!
United States law allows your donation to be tax deductible. 100% Net revenues are allocated directly to the people in need
We aim to cover schools & students all over Lebanese Territories