Poverty at the forefront of new UN Lebanon campaign

Source: United Nations official website

BEIRUT: Spending less than $270 per month, 27% of Lebanese are considered poor. In 2015, 70% of Syrian refugees in Lebanon spent less than $120 a month, 65% of Palestine refugees spent less than $210 a month, and 90% of Palestine refugees from Syria spent less than $80 a month.

As a result of this dire economic situation, all the UN entities in Lebanon have come together once again to add to the “Take a Step” campaign, and produced a short video with the aim to raise awareness on poverty, with the belief that Lebanon can lift many out of poverty, through targeted support for the poorest and renewed efforts to increase economic growth.

"Take a Step” is a one year campaign that was launched in December 2018, the campaign tackles six of the most relevant, and pressing goals of the local community. These goals were previously assessed as the most relevant to the Lebanese context and its undergoing challenges, the goals are the following: No poverty, quality education, gender equality, affordable and clean energy, life below water and peace, justice and strong institutions.

In this framework, the $4 video campaign came to life and was shared among social media platforms to deliver the message that many people in Lebanon are living on a budget of $4 a day, this video targeted the “No poverty” goal. 

On 25 September 2015, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, promising to work towards a more sustainable world where no one is left behind, and where the present way of life supports an equally good or even better life for future generations.

There are 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the core of the 2030 Agenda, setting high expectations for all countries in addressing challenges such as poverty, health, education, women’s empowerment, growth, inequality, environment protection, and governance.

In addressing issues that are highly relevant to Lebanon and its residents, the SDGs are an opportunity for the country to develop an ambitious and shared vision of Lebanon fifteen years from now: “The Lebanon We Want.”

The campaign succeeds at reminding us that whether it is about how to end poverty, or educate a child, or benefit from affordable energy, we can always find simple and straightforward steps that we can take to help Lebanon have a better future.