In an inspiring demonstration of unity in the face of adversity, more than 70 designers, photographers, and visual artists from around the world are pooling their creative talent to help provide relief to struggling communities in Lebanon. The Arab nation is currently undergoing a severe economic crisis where about one-third of the population is living below the poverty line and more than 1 million people are surviving on less than 20 AED per day. Responding to this urgent need for humanitarian assistance, Parisian designer Hala Moawad is spearheading a charity exhibition where the proceeds are donated to Beit el Baraka, a locally-run NGO in Lebanon committed to providing aid for marginalized communities throughout the country.
As the founder of Momma’s Blues—an upcycled line of purely customizable jean, leather, and suede jackets that have caught the curious eyes of many celebrity vintage enthusiasts—Moawad invited dozens of the most renowned sartorial talents to participate in the benefit. Fashion Week favorite Jacquemus, boundary-breaking couturier Jean-Paul Gaultier, and the unofficial king of tulle Giambattista Valli all answered the call to action and offered pieces for the upcoming charity event. Among various other international names, eminent fashion houses from the region also contributed items from their coveted collections—from Lebanese designers Rabih Kayrouz and Sandra Mansour who often spotlight their home country in runway presentations to London-based jewelry creator Noor Fares whose in-demand pieces are often influenced by her Lebanese heritage.
After recognizing Lebanese people who are suffering the burden of living in poverty have little access to international financial resources and government assistance, Beit el Baraka founder Maya Ibrahimchah sought to create a sustainable solution that will improve the living conditions of the country’s impoverished elderly and retired members. “Not helping them would’ve made me miserable,” said Ibrahimchah in a previous interview with Vogue Arabia. “I look at some people around me who watch their country sink and do absolutely nothing. And I pity them.” Now, the NGO founder has supported hundreds of families in Beirut through home renovations, medical aid, and a community supermarket where patrons are able to pick up necessities for free.
During Covid-19, Ibrahimchah partnered with the Lebanese Food Bank and 95 local organizations to supply more than 50,000 families with home-delivered food care packages to help them overcome this unexpected crisis. With an ambitious mission to ensure every Lebanese has the opportunity to live with love and dignity, Ibrahimchah has her sights set on empowering these often forgotten community members with the resources to support themselves—a goal that may not be too far on the horizon with the help of the international creative industry.
The opening reception of “It’s Lebanon’s anarchy that bothers you” charity exhibition will take place on July 3 at 6 pm at the Galerie Charraudeau (3 rue Bonaparte, 75006 Paris).
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