Yemen crisis: What you need to know
What’s happening in Yemen?
Yemen is the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, with more than 24 million people – some 80 per cent of the population – in need of humanitarian assistance, including more than 12 million children. Since the conflict escalated in March 2015, the country has become a living hell for the country’s children.
With COVID-19 now spreading across the country, Yemen is facing an emergency within an emergency. Sanitation and clean water are in short supply. Only half of health facilities are functioning, and many that remain operational lack basic equipment like masks and gloves, let alone oxygen and other essential supplies to treat the coronavirus. Many health workers are receiving no salaries or incentives. Read more about UNICEF's COVID-19 response and how the coronavirus is impacting children in Yemen
How is the crisis affecting children?
Children continue to be killed and maimed in the conflict. Nearly 2.3 million children under the age of five in Yemen are projected to suffer from acute malnutrition in 2021. The damage and closure of schools and hospitals has disrupted access to education and health services, leaving children even more vulnerable and robbing them of their futures. Before COVID-19, 2 million children were out of school. Now, because of the pandemic, schools have been closed around the country, leaving an additional 5 million children out of school.
What UNICEF is doing in Yemen
UNICEF is on the ground across Yemen to save children’s lives, to help them cope with the impact of conflict, and to help them to recover and resume their childhoods. Conflict and violence have pushed more families into poverty and deprivation. UNICEF is helping treat severe acute malnutrition in children by providing essential therapeutic food and medical supplies.
As part of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, UNICEF had by early June shipped more than 33,000 N95 respirators, 33,000 face shields, and 18,000 gowns – crucial personal protective equipment needed by frontline workers. Children are also being helped with victim assistance and education on mines and explosive remnants of war. Meanwhile, UNICEF and partners are rehabilitating damaged schools and establishing safe learning spaces.
*Each family hygiene kit includes 7 bars of hand soap, 7 bars of laundry soap, soft multipurpose cloth, toothbrushes and toothpaste for children and adults, 5 towels, shampoo, sanitary pads, a strong collapsible 10-litre jerrycan for transporting water, a plastic bucket with a lid to store food or water & a 3-litre plastic jug.
*Each winter clothing kit includes warm winter coats and jumpers, trousers, boots, hats and socks for children, and warm jackets and shawls for women – all packed in a durable storage bag.