In September 2014, we traveled to Lebanon to capture what life is like for Syrian refugees living in the Bekaa Valley. We were hosted by the humanitarian organisation MEDAIR who has been helping newly arriving refugees primarily with establishing safe shelters since 2012. Check out to see what they are doing at: medair.org
This film is a collections of sights and sounds from our experience in the informal settlements of the Bekaa Valley where more than 130.000 Syrian refugees are seeking safety. The government has been hesitant to allow formal refugee camps, so these families are living in makeshift shelters on rented farmland from Lebanese farmers with little to no amenities such as water and sanitation.
The Bekaa Valley is situated just an hour drive West to the capitol, Beirut, and just a few kilometers away from Damascus, the Syrian capitol. We also shot some surrounding landscapes and life in Beirut to to show the visual and cultural context of the situation in Lebanon.
Directed & Edited by: Vincent Urban
Camera: Vincent Urban & Stefan Templer
Shot with Canon 5D Mark III
Music: Ben Lukas Boysen – “Gravity”
If you’re interested here’s some description of the work featured in the film:
0:55 – Medair is working in informal tented settlements in the Bekaa Valley, plots of private farmland that refugees rent from Lebanese landowners. Medair distributes durable shelter materials to help refugee families reinforce flimsy tents and protect these tents from harsh weather conditions.
1:27 -Doctors, nurses, and technicians are paid and trained by Medair to reinforce these clinics so both vulnerable Lebanese and Syrian Refugees can access affordable health care. Community members are also trained on important nutrition and breastfeeding practices and screened for malnutrition.
1:43 – Medair conducts site improvements to mitigate flooding and improve sanitation, drainage, and hygiene in informal settlements. Small engineering works- digging ditches, laying gravel and pipes and building “soakaways” to manage kitchen and waste water, are tailored as necessary for each site.