Global Communities’ Lebanon Engagement
Global Communities and PCI, a Global Communities Partner, have implemented community-driven humanitarian assistance programs for decades, responding to the needs of millions of families in countries around the globe. From natural disasters, to armed conflict, to social and economic upheaval, we are there to meet the humanitarian needs of vulnerable people affected by crisis. We work in partnership with a range of community stakeholders, both public and private, to enable communities to recover from crisis, rebuild safely, and restart livelihoods sooner, laying the foundation for long-term recovery.
Global Communities, known locally as CHF International, has deep roots in Lebanon, where we have worked to support communities in shelter solutions, economic development, and community infrastructure. Over nearly three decades, our work has reached tens of thousands of Lebanese families. Letting communities be the central guide of their own development, Global Communities has worked with donors including USAID, UNHCR, and the Caterpillar Foundation to construct and repair schools, improve roads, and rehabilitate drainage and irrigation canals to support the wellbeing and livelihoods of people and communities.
Vitas Group was founded by Global Communities, and shares its mission of improving the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable people. Vitas operates in Jordan, Lebanon, Romania, Palestine, and Iraq, with its first franchisee company in Egypt that launched in early 2019. As of June 2020, Vitas served 85.330 clients and had an outstanding portfolio of $238 million.
Since 2004, Vitas companies have disbursed more than $3 billion to over 1 million customers with an annual default rate below two percent.
Vitas Lebanon has been operating in Lebanon since 1999, first, as an NGO through a cooperative agreement with USAID, then as a service company working with three Lebanese banks in 2004, and finally as a non-bank financial institution specialized in microfinance services for the vulnerable population. Over the years, Vitas Lebanon has provided financial services to the most vulnerable segments of the Lebanese population, particularly women, youth, and the under-privileged in rural areas. Vitas Lebanon’s role within the Lebanese community has been instrumental as a catalyst of positive long-lasting change.
Vitas Lebanon signed a Loan Guarantee Facility with the Development Finance Corporation (DFC), formerly known as Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) in 2007 for up to $20 million to support enterprise and housing loans. In 2012, facility was renewed and increased to $50 million. In 2015, Vitas Lebanon received OPIC’s Impact Award in the Access to Finance category. The current facility is about to be increased to $150,000,000. Since 2007, DFC has guaranteed $204.5 million in loans to Lebanese entrepreneurs and homeowners.
“Li Beirut” is a charitable initiative started by Vitas Lebanon in partnership with Global Communities and other local partners to assist local communities in alleviating the impact of the disaster caused by the Beirut Explosion through fundraising for housing repair and rehabilitation. Vitas Lebanon has longstanding social and development mission and commitments, in normal circumstances, exercised by the provision of microfinance services to the under-privileged and vulnerable segments of the Lebanese population.
Vitas Lebanon renewed its unwavering commitment to the local community, and created Li Beirut for fundraising to support, assist, and help the victims of the Beirut explosion.