Lebanon: Italian "blue helmets" donate toys to children


"Give a toy, give a smile". This is the slogan coined by the Italian soldiers of the Unifil mission for the special donation of 1.600 toys to children of Lebanese families who are in particularly difficult situations. The initiative stems from the awareness that many families find it difficult to give a toy to their children, especially when the priorities within the family are quite different.

The toys, purchased with funds from the Italian Ministry of Defense, were packaged in gift boxes and delivered to the volunteers of Caritas in Tire and Rumaysh and to the heads of some schools in southern Lebanon who will distribute them on the occasion of the upcoming holidays.

"A small gesture towards the Lebanese children that made us feel close to our children, knowing that we cannot hug them during this Christmas", said General Andrea Di Stasio, commander of the Italian contingent, in video connection with the president of Caritas of Rumaysh and some children of the small municipality.

"It is a gesture of great value that shows all the strength of Italian solidarity"added Di Stasio, noting that "The playful aspect is an essential right and inherent with the needs and requirements of a child's growth and development", as expressly recognized for the first time by the UN convention on the rights of children and adolescents adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on November 20, 1989.

Supporting local authorities and restoring the conditions for assistance to the population are among the main tasks assigned to Unifil by UN Security Council Resolution 1701, together with monitoring the cessation of hostilities between Lebanon and Israel and supporting Lebanese armed forces