Between the COVID-19 crisis and the Beirut Port explosion, the work of the Lebanese University Task Force (LUTF) unit was diversified throughout August 2020, in cooperation with the Disaster Risk Reduction Department (DRR) of the Lebanese Red Cross and a number of Local and international organizations, with the support of the Governor of Mount Lebanon, Judge Mohamad Makkawi.
Due to the repercussions of the port explosion, a "Crisis Unit" was established with a headquarters in the building of the Mount Lebanon Governorate in Forn El Chebbak. The unit included volunteers from LU faculties, from professors, doctors and students, whose tasks included the following:
· Coordinating, managing and organizing the removal of rubble from roads, streets and squares, and assisting people to clean their houses from the effects of the explosion;
· Assisting in detecting the damages of the buildings and collecting their detailed data in preparation for their restoration or rebuilding, in cooperation with the professors of the Faculty of Fine Arts & Architecture and the engineering team (Frontline Engineers Lebanon);
· Providing first aid, medical services, and medicines for the injured, and assisting the elderly in moving to safe places or hospitals, in cooperation between the volunteers of the Faculty of Medical Sciences and Faculty of Public Health;
· Providing health guidelines regarding some medicines, namely chronic drugs, and seeking to secure them from donors and distribute them to those in need;
· Conducting a comprehensive “psychological assessment” to people in the affected areas and collecting data on their psychological status, in cooperation with “Nehna Haddak” initiative from the Faculty of Letters & Human Sciences and “FLOW” organization;
In cooperation with the Lebanese Red Cross, LUTF team continues to follow-up on measures taken to prevent COVID-19 during the exam period at the Lebanese University, under the supervision of Dr. Roula Atwi, Dr. Elie Hadchiti, Dr. Mirna Attieh, and students Lynn Raad, Marc Bayyad and Maitham Yassin.
Under the supervision of Dr. Roula Atwi and Dr. Ghassan Al-Awar, in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Health, a third team from LUTF is conducting PCR examinations for arrivals in the Rafik Hariri International Airport and following up the implications of COVID-19 crisis.
It is noteworthy that LUTF teams are cooperating with a group of local and international partners to implement their objectives, including:
· Lebanese Red Cross
· Makhzoumi Foundation