''I don't know how to handle this shock. This shouldn't have happened!'

One of the neighborhoods in Beirut that was hit hardest during the explosion is Mar Mikhael. It is the neighborhood where 17-year-old Amina (not her real name) lives with her parents and her 11-year-old brother. In recent years, the family had only one concern: Amina’s life. After she was diagnosed cancer, she received treatment for several years. Recently she was declared cured. And then came the explosion that put her life upside down again.

Almost all of Mar Mikhael was wiped out by the explosion. Amina and her family were also hit hard. Amina’s mother passed away as a result of her injuries. Amina: ”She was perfectly healthy, and now she suddenly and unexpectedly disappeared from our lives. After worrying about my health for years, she could not even enjoy the fact that I am healed.

I don’t know how to handle this shock. Every morning I wake up I tell myself I have to start living my life again. But I don’t know how. Our house is no longer habitable. Doors are broken, the walls are cracked, a lot of furniture and equipment got damaged. But at the moment, this is the least of our worries. My father does not have a high salary, and many product became more expensive after the explosion. At the moment we can only hope that we have enough to eat and that the situation does not escalate any further.

I want to remain anonymous because I want to be honest. I am angry. This event was a direct result of the corruption in our country. It shouldn’t have happened. My mother could still have been alive. It makes me angry when people talk about compensation, because a loved one cannot be compensated. I can only think about my mother. Nothing else matters at this point.

There were already many tensions in Lebanon, and I can see that tensions are rising. I pray that God will provide justice and give us the patience to wait for His justice.”

ZOA joined forces in the Christian Emergency Relief Cluster to help people like Amira that are suffering from the explosion in Beirut. The first focus will be on multi purpose cash, psychosocial care and house repair. The next stage will focus on rebuilding livelihoods. 

Click here to read more about the way ZOA works together with other organisations.