With the support of the European Union, we have helped more than 5,000 women survivors regain autonomy and independence



It is hard to imagine what it might mean to be a young refugee mother in an unknown country. This is the story of Noha, a Syrian woman in her forties who has settled in Lebanon, in the Chouf district of Beirut. An unstable flat is all she could afford. What made the environment unsafe were not only the typical difficulties of people fleeing their country, but also an overly friendly and intrusive neighbour, who started abusing and stalking her.


Until Noha met the social worker at our centre in Bchamoun, in the governorate of Mount Lebanon, together with other women in the same condition. There she discovered that someone could help her and that there was a hotline she could call in case of emergency. So, she took courage and got in touch with the INTERSOS workers with whom she began psychological support. She decided to move out of that flat and, thanks to the financial help INTERSOS gave her, she found accommodation in another neighbourhood.


While Noha had not planned to find herself alone in the house with a violent stranger, Sarah did not realise that she would be a victim of violence by the man she had decided to marry. After her first marriage ended badly, she remarried and had her third child with the man who would become her aggressor. A man who abused her and never accepted the presence of her other two children and decided to send them back to Syria. Sarah, vulnerable physically and emotionally, tried desperately to stop her husband.


With no means or resources at her disposal, Sarah contacted our social workers and was helped to flee the house with the children. To earn some money, she offered to clean the entire building and help some housewives there; in this way, she could stay in the house with her children. Moreover, she managed to earn enough to provide for her family’s basic needs. Then, thanks to the financial support she received from INTERSOS, she was able to move into a safer house and pay her rent. Although economic difficulties remain, Sarah does everything she can to remain independent, seek job stability and stay away from her husband’s abuse.


We help women survivors of gender-based violence


Violence against women means physical, psychological, and emotional violence. In Lebanon, with the support of the European Union, we help women who are survivors of gender-based violence in the governorate of Mount Lebanon and in the south of the country, through two safe spaces where we offer awareness-raising sessions and psychological support to vulnerable people and those with disabilities. We also provide financial support to ensure people have the resources to get away from their aggressors. To facilitate access to protection services, we have set up a hotline that anyone can call for help. The hotline is a starting point for people at risk of violence to call for help and remain anonymous. In addition, we carry out awareness-raising programmes with the help of social workers and volunteers from the local community on gender-based violence, early marriage and how to get out of violence. Currently, we have assisted more than 6,967 people, including 5,090 women.


Since 2006 we have been working in Lebanon and since 2013, we have been responding to the needs caused by the Syrian crisis. INTERSOS is present in all the governorates of Lebanon, with four operational bases in Beirut, Tripoli, Zahle and Tyr. We provide psychosocial support and legal assistance to vulnerable groups and survivors of gender-based violence or those at risk.