New approaches to meet urgent needs in Yemen

Yemen remains in the grip of the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. A staggering 24 million people are in need of urgent assistance - over half of them children. That’s why we’re supporting the work of War Child UK to meet immediate needs through new programme approaches.
War Child UK in Yemen

An estimated 12.3 million children in Yemen are currently in need of humanitarian assistance.

Photo: War Child UK

Worsening Conditions

Yemen has been beset by a violent and wide-ranging civil war for more than four years - and, incredibly, the situation continues to worsen. Recent weeks have seen fighting intensify with southern separatists leaving the ruling coalition to take up arms - adding to the number of armed groups competing for control of the country.

The resulting economic collapse has triggered a food crisis with some ten million people suffering from acute malnutrition. This emergency situation demands new solutions - which is why we’ve adopted a radical new approach to our work in Yemen.

War Child UK in Yemen

We provide life-saving food relief for the most vulnerable children and families.

Photo: War Child UK

War Child UK in Yemen

We distribute cash and vouchers. Each voucher helps a family buy enough food for one month.

Photo: War Child UK

Life-Saving Food Relief

In Yemen we provide life-saving food relief through distributing cash and vouchers directly to the most vulnerable children and families. Each voucher helps a family buy enough food for one month - essentials such as wheat, pulses and vegetable oil.

There are significant advantages to this approach. The distribution system is faster and more cost-effective than importing actual food items - and requires no storage facilities or complicated logistics networks.

Food vouchers also serve to strengthen the local economy and reduce the time that people would otherwise spend queuing up for food distribution - ensuring they continue to maintain control over their lives.

Working Long-term

Meeting basic needs also gives us a platform to contribute to healthy child development in the longer term - particularly with regard to the psychological effects of Yemen’s long civil war.

Mental distress among children and youth in Yemen is acute - at least 35 per cent of child protection incidents reported to social workers in 2018 were related to mental health and psychosocial issues. Yet available support services are scarce - and hungry and displaced children face significant barriers in accessing our services.

We work to address these barriers to care. We provide vital psychosocial support to enable children to rebuild their emotional resilience and process their difficult experiences. We also work to rehabilitate schools and set up Child Friendly Spaces to ensure children can learn in a safe environment.

War and famine continue to imperil the people of Yemen - but the work of NGOs to save and sustain human lives continues to make a real impact within this difficult context.