Disaster Relief

After the Blast

For the people of Beirut, Lebanon, August 4 of this year is a day they’ll not soon forget. A massive explosion killed hundreds and wounded thousands, with the blast creating a pressure wave that was felt more than 150 miles away. It was one of the most significant explosions of modern day; the blast not only killed and injured residents of Beirut, but the aftermath left nearly 300,000 homeless.

Following the disaster, a local Lebanese seminary, Arab Baptist Theological Seminary (ABTS), used one of its university buildings to house 50 displaced families. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and summer break, the university building was mostly empty, thus providing dorm rooms for more than 150 people in need.

As soon as Wellness Advocate Anita Delhass-Van Dijk heard about the blast, she immediately made plans to help. Anita is the owner of her own nonprofit organization, Re-Starter, and therefore knows that time is of the essence when helping those who have been impacted by any type of disaster. She reached out to the dōTERRA Healing Hands Foundation®, a U.S. Foundation, to set up a matching campaign to convert the empty college dorms into temporary housing, and provide food for those staying there.

Anita and Blue Diamond Victoria Plekenol championed fundraising efforts on their end, and The Foundation matched the donations. With this financial support, the families staying at the ABTS dormitories received three meals a day. The funds also secured necessary items for the dorm rooms, like beds and refrigerators, and paid for vans and transportation. Students and volunteers came to the aid of these displaced families, donating time and effort to provide support during such a tumultuous and uncertain time. For the families affected by the explosion, losing their homes in the middle of a worldwide pandemic—even as their home country was already struggling economically—felt like the last straw.

Because of help from Anita and Victoria, The Foundation, Re-Starter, ATBS, and other devoted volunteers, these families had a place to rest and food to eat while they determined how to come back from such devastation and tragedy.


Home for All - Lesvos Refugee Crisis

Europe is in the middle of one of its biggest humanitarian crises ever, the refugee crisis. Since 2016, doTERRA has supported several partners on the ground and made other vital donations. We chose to act on the island of Lesvos, as this is the Greek island where most boats from Turkey arrive...

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