AUB joins hands with Rebirth Beirut to illuminate AUBMC’s neighboring streets

In a splendid display of unity and progress through the “Light Up Our Community Initiative,” the American University of Beirut (AUB), Rebirth Beirut, and Medco joined forces to illuminate the surroundings of the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC). The event was graced by the presence of several dignitaries, private sector representatives, members of the esteemed AUB community, and cherished residents of the neighborhood.

The ceremony took place on Tuesday, February 27, 2024, at 5:00 pm at the AUBMC Main Entrance Plaza. Among the distinguished guests were AUB President Fadlo Khuri, Director of AUBMC Joseph Otayek, Governor of Beirut Judge Marwan Abboud, Head of Beirut Municipal Council Abdullah Darwich, Founder and President of Rebirth Beirut Gaby Ferneine, Chief Innovation Officer at Medco Michelle Chammas Gharzouzi, and Mr. Namir Chahine, representing Light Incorporated. To celebrate another spark in the dark, the AUB Neighborhood Initiative organized a performance by captivating singer Ghada Ghanem with accordionist Samah Abulmona and percussionist Loubnan Aoun.

Thanks to the generous contribution from renowned wildlife photographer Michel Zoghzoghi and Light Inc., Philips LED streetlights have replaced the outdated lamps on the streetlight poles, significantly reducing the energy burden. The streets surrounding the American University of Beirut Medical Center now gleam brightly, powered by the AUB generators. This marks the third phase of the fruitful partnership between AUB and Rebirth Beirut, following the successful illumination of Bliss Street and the Corniche last year.

AUB President Khuri welcomed the attendees and thanked all partners for making this event possible. He stated that the medical center serves as the heartbeat of the nation, extending its impact beyond Beirut, and that the aim is to light up not only the city, but the entire country.

Director of AUBMC Joseph Otayek expressed his gratitude saying, “Our medical center has stood by Beirut, in its sweet and bitter days, never once closing its doors. It is imperative that we unite our efforts to preserve this medical institution, ensuring it continues to stand as an enduring symbol of Lebanon.”

Commenting on the collaboration, Mr. Ferneine from Rebirth Beirut said, “So far, we have illuminated 132 streets, nine main avenues, four squares, two parks, two stairs, and one tunnel in Beirut, and today we are illuminating parts of Cairo, Maamari, Abdel-Aziz, Clemenceau, and John Kennedy streets, once again in collaboration with the American University of Beirut and its medical center, two prominent landmarks in the heart of our city.”

Echoing this sentiment, Ms. Michelle Chammas Gharzouzi from Medco stated, “This step today would not have been completed without the faith of many people in Rebirth Beirut, including us. We embarked together about two years ago on the journey of illuminating the city, and we will continue hand in hand, God willing.”

Judge Marwan Abboud, a steady partner in this campaign, said, “Proud of the people of my city Beirut and all those who made this success possible is an understatement. I admire their resilience and their unwavering commitment to bettering our beloved city especially during these times more than any. In closing, let me pay tribute to Rebirth Beirut, an organization working tirelessly to put Lebanon on the map.” He then concluded by expressing his gratitude to AUB, the international university that plays a pivotal role in spreading knowledge and light in “our beloved city, Beirut.”

This illuminating endeavor marks a significant milestone for AUB, showcasing its unwavering commitment to enhancing the quality of life of the citizens of Beirut and bolstering the wellbeing of its communities. By brightening the streets of Ras Beirut, AUB not only facilitates easier navigation, but also cultivates a sense of safety and security among its residents. As AUB continues to lead the way in championing initiatives that prioritize community service, social responsibility, energy efficiency, and environmental sustainability, it remains resolute in its dedication to serving our city and fostering a brighter, more vibrant future for all.


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