(Civil Defense services in the camps of Beirut)
The Arab Rescue Organization (ARO) is a local organization registered by the Lebanese law under the number 1852 at the ministry of interior in the year 2008.
The initiative to establish ARO came from a number of Palestinian and Lebanese activists and social figures in order to respond to the need of the Palestinian camps and their surroundings in Lebanon for specialized sustainable and continuous services in the fields of rescue and civil defense activities.
The main objectives of ARO are:
To establish civil defense centers in different areas to secure rescue and civil defense services.
To train young men and women on civil defense activities and social security actions.
To coordinate and network among other governmental and civil organizations.
To offer information services to the public concerning environmental, health and protection issues.
To assist the refugee community to act against HIV/AIDS, drug abuse and violations of rights of women and children.
Around 20,000 Palestinian refugees live around Beirut in two official camps Sabra/Shatilla and Borj Al Baragneh, and several gatherings in Daouk and Ghawash areas. These camps and gathering suffer from severe living conditions in terms of environmental and social standards.
The homes are small and dark because of lack of spaces and roads. Services of all kinds are short and ineffective due shortage of funds for proper housing and environmental health.
Moving around the buildings and blocks is very difficult due to irregular building and bad planning; it is hard to respond to move in and out for civil defense teams, ambulances and fire squads to move around in the cases of emergency, as well as for old men and women, disabled and sick people.
The security status of the camps is always endangered by violent actions due to lack of security forces and unstable political situation in Lebanon in general and in the camps specifically.
To encourage young men and women to conduct civil services activities and Invest their free times in community services.
To protect young men and women from drugs and social problems.
To intervene during emergencies caused by violence and natural disasters.
To coordinate and cooperate with other Lebanese and Palestinian official and civil organizations.
To offer sick and injuries people safe and professional transport to emergency facilities.
To make local communities aware about environmental, protection and safety issues.
Work Plan and Planned activities:
Establishment of a civil defense center in an area in the middle between all camps to reach as fast as possible.
Supply the center with all necessary equipment to conduct operations.
Train 60 young men and women on civil defense and first aid techniques.
Recruit volunteers to operate the center.
Recruit a full time management team.
Establish a work plan to operate in 3 shifts in 24 hours preparedness.
Equip the center and the cars with necessary communication tools.
Produce a pamphlet and a website to make the public aware about he center and its services.
Establish a daily program for patient transfer.
Launch awareness campaigns.
Conduct surveys in the camps and gathering about people with chronic illnesses and disabilities who need special care, and create a data base.
Offer people with chronic illness and disabilities safe transportation to health and rehabilitation facilities.
Offer emergency first aid services to injured and sick people.
Work on preventing and combating fire accidents.
Transport deceased people to cemeteries decently.
Spreading awareness among families and parents about causes and prevention of home accidents (wounds, burns, poisoning and fractures) .
Raising awareness about smoking, medicine abuse, drugs and dangers of drug addiction.
Raising awareness about HIV/AIDS, H1N1, and contagious diseases.
Contribution to the local initiative for environmental awareness and protection.