The United Nations launched an appeal Friday to raise $565 million to help Lebanon recover from this month's devastating port blast that killed 171 people. The UN said in a statement that the funds would be used to support Lebanon as it moves from immediate life-saving humanitarian relief towards rebuilding its shattered economy. The August 4 explosion flattened surrounding neighborhoods, leaving thousands homeless, damaged dozens of hospitals and clinics and destroyed more than 100 schools. It also wounded at least 6,500 residents. The explosion was caused by a huge stock of hazardous materials stored in a warehouse, and was widely blamed on state corruption. Western powers have pressed Lebanon's leaders for deep changes and a government that reflects the will of the people, and also insisted reforms be implemented to unlock billions of dollars in international aid.