In August 2013, USAID requested the WISE-Lebanon program conduct a rapid assessment of the communities served by the Water Establishments (WE) and directly affected by the Syrian refugee influx in order to identify, develop, recommend, and potentially implement integrated interventions. The focus of the interventions would raise the capacity of the WEs to cope with the increase in water demands on local water resources due to the refugee influx and to address the recurring emergencies resulting from an overall volatile situation in the Middle East region.
The assessment was implemented in two parts: (1) a quick response needs assessment in the water sector to identify potential interventions that, ideally, can be implemented within six months to one year; and (2) an emergency preparedness assessment of the WEs ability to respond to emergency and crisis situations that affect service delivery. It was coordinated with the WE senior management and associated branch managers, municipalities, and the current efforts of other donors in response to the crisis. The WISE-Lebanon rapid assessment team cooperated with donors such as UNHCR, UNICEF, UNDP, ICRC, GIZ, the World Bank, and the European Union to capitalize on their response activities and lessons learned to date, and leveraged their successes to further the objectives of the rapid assessment recommendations.