Lebanon, located on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, shares its borders with Syria and Israel. The western mountain range contains the last remaining groves of the Cedars of Lebanon, used by the ancient Phoenicians to build ships, houses, and temples.

  • Population: 4,647,100
  • Life Expectancy: 80 years
  • Access to Safe Water: 100%
  • School Enrollment: 97%
  • Land Mass: 4,015 sq. mi.
  • Literacy Rate: 90%
  • Under Age 5 Mortality Rate: 9/1000
  • Average Annual Income (GNI): 9,190

Facts about Lebanon

Economic Development

Before 1975, Lebanon played a major role in the Middle East economic, social, and cultural arena. However, with the outburst of the civil war, which lasted for 15 years (1975-1990), Lebanon’s status declined drastically. Almost 30 percent of people live below the poverty line.

Child Protection

Lebanon is one of the few countries in this region that is not resource-rich but is dependent on service industries such as tourism, bank and financial services, and as a trans-shipment point for trade. All of these are easily disrupted by political tensions, uncertainty, violence, and conflict.

Child Protection

Due to the conflict in Syria, many Syrians have been fleeing to Lebanon for refuge. There are now more than 800,000 Syrian refugees in Lebanon. This crisis has also increased child-related vulnerabilities.


Many children in Lebanon suffer from lack of hope for a safe and secure future, having lived through several wars and being constantly exposed to the instability of the country.

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Progress in Lebanon

Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors. World Vision was able to work alongside communities to accomplish the following in 2014.

  • To ensure that children's safety was protected, we educated parents on child rights and provided them with parenting classes.

  • World Vision trained children on self protection and child rights to provide them with safety in their communities.

  • We conducted training sessions for emergency response committee members and healthcare providers on how to care for children during emergencies such as refugee resettlement.

  • Local parents attended our workshops on the importance of their involvement in education, early childhood education, and drug prevention.

  • We helped students with learning difficulties adapt to school environments and communicate with their peers.

  • Teachers were trained in improved teaching methods to help increase the number of children who complete primary school.

  • We trained mothers' groups on maternal and child health and nutrition in order to prepare them to respond to their children's health needs.

  • We collaborated with Red Cross youth members to host a community workshop for adolescents on health, nutrition, and prevention of substance abuse.

  • To demonstrate the Christian values of tolerance and equality, we organized a sports day for 136 youth from different religious backgrounds. Youth who attended the event participated in sports activities and an interfaith dialogue to get to know each other.

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    World Vision in Lebanon Today

    World Vision is committed to partnering with the people of Lebanon to improve their lives today and to help enact sustainable solutions for the future of their children, families, and communities. World Vision’s child sponsorship program plays a vital role in this partnership, with donors from the United States sponsoring more than 8,200 girls and boys. In addition to sponsorship, World Vision operates other programs that benefit communities in Lebanon. Highlights include:

    • Distributing hygiene/baby kits to refugee families from Syria.
    • Increasing healthcare access and nutrition information for mothers.
    • Implementing water projects for Syrian refugees.

    World Vision History in Lebanon

    World Vision’s involvement in Lebanon began in 1975 with childcare work through schools and healthcare institutions. Since then, some major accomplishments include:

    • Supplying food, medication, and clothing to families displaced by civil war in the late 1970s and into the 1990s.
    • Helping children gain access to quality education since the 1980s.
    • Providing communities with nutrition, education, healthcare, and agriculture programs since the 1990s.
    • Distributing food, water, and hygiene supplies to people affected by internal fighting since the beginning of the 21st century.

    Geography & People

    Geography and people

    Lebanon, located on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, shares its borders with Syria and Israel. The western mountain range contains the last remaining groves of the Cedars of Lebanon, used by the ancient Phoenicians to build ships, houses, and temples.

    With its Mediterranean climate, Lebanon is the only country in the Middle East that does not have a desert. Natural resources include limestone, iron ore, salt, drinkable water, and arable land.

    More than 95 percent of Lebanese people are Arabic. The remaining population consists of Armenians, Kurds, Jews, and Persians. Many Christian Lebanese identify themselves as descendents of the ancient Canaanites and prefer to be called Phoenicians.

    Arabic is the country’s official language, though French, English, and Armenian are also widely spoken and taught in schools.

    Many Lebanese people work in industries such as wood and furniture production, mineral and chemical processing, and cement factories. Tourism is also a primary source of national income.


    After 23 years under France’s rule, Lebanon gained independence in 1943. The country’s history since independence has been marked by civil war and political turmoil. The one exception was in the 1960s when Lebanon enjoyed a period of peace, focusing on banking and tourism.

    The calm was shattered in April 1975 when Lebanese gunmen ambushed a bus. That event sparked a 16-year civil war filled with car bombs, rocket-propelled attacks, and assassinations. By the end of hostilities in May 1991, hundreds of thousands of people had been killed or affected by the war. Post-war recovery hit a setback in 2006 when a 34-day war started between a Lebanese Islamic group, Hezbollah, and Israel.

    In the past few years, debate and tensions have marked elections.

    Prayer Requests for Lebanon

    • Please pray for improvements to school buildings and teacher training that will enhance education for children.
    • Pray also for enough food resources for Lebanese and Syrian children and youth who are at risk of malnutrition.