How the war in Yemen has caused the greatest uncertainty in Human History on an entire nation
A NATION WITH NO GUARANTEE
Over 54,000 people have been killed from the conflict alone not including the thousands who have died from lack of medicine, food, clean water and shelter. Yemen is still the world’s worst man-made humanitarian crisis and a severe decline in the countries economics has pushed the country to the brink of famine. It was already one of the world’s poorest countries and the war has cataclysmically devasted this further. In every sector the increasing needs of the country are intensifying. People are dying by the day and the inhumane embargo has forced an entire country into a worsening state of punishing hunger. This level of scarcity in Yemen is unknown to human history. The UN warns of a catastrophic death count as a result of the pitiless embargo and the blockade has shown no remorse in taking lives of the innocent. Sadly, those suffering are mostly women and children. Despite this, most deaths are preventable as most of the issues lie in poor healthcare, disease and malnutrition. This unnatural state that Yemenis are forced to endure is causing long-term physical and mental damage. A shocking 22 million are solely relying on humanitarian assistance from overseas aid and they people are living daily life in uncertainty not knowing where their next day’s meal will come from. No matter how resourceful one is, facing severe hunger and disease is inevitable for the needy in Yemen. Deprivation of the basic needs for survival has become a mandatory condition on almost the entire country. A human’s right breach on millions which calls for an urgent response.
MALNUTRITION AND HUNGER
Over 20 million Yemenis are food insecure and over half of them are suffering severe levels of hunger. Two thirds of every district in the country are showing signs of pre-famine. The severity of the country is worsening and showing no improvement since the war began. 14.3 million are acutely in need and this has risen by almost 20% since last year. It is estimated an unbelievable 3.2 million are extremely malnourished and require urgent treatment or face a cruel merciless death. A shocking two thirds are children under the age of five and over one million are pregnant or lactating women. The severity of the situation is unlike anything the world has ever seen. The basic survival needs cannot be met as echoes of pain from hunger is uttered throughout the entire country. The grain that is essential to saving the lives of the Yemeni people is left to rot at key storage facilities located near the Red Sea and the conditions to reach it is too dangerous. The local food sector in the country has been compromised and the agricultural sector in the country has been the hardest hit, thus fueling the situation further into disarray. All imports into the country has been targeted and has been shrinking since the beginning of the conflict. The future of the next generation is looking bleak. The growth of cognitive development of children suffering acute malnutrition has been severely impaired and those suffering are numbered in the millions. A mother’s love is unconditional; however, mothers are forced to choose which child to feed whilst the others are left to combat death. Hunger has led to mental and physical torture on the destitute. These are only some of the few stories depicting the frightening situations the Yemeni people face.
WATER, SANITATION AND CHOLERA
It is said more than 17.8 million people have no access to clean sanitation and safe drinking water. Waterborne diseases have arisen from filthy alternative drinking water that has affected the safety of hundreds of thousands of people and last year alone, over one million Yemenis suffered from cholera. Although the numbers began to reduce since the outbreak started, recently the suspected cases of cholera nearly doubled since March 2019. The spread of disease has been harnessed by warfare and weather which has created the perfect conditions for illnesses like cholera to spread. It is the fast spreading of avoidable diseases that is wreaking havoc in the country. This is made worse when hospitals who are able to cure the diseases have been completely devasted as a result of the ongoing conflict. The situation is classed as an epidemic and the country has been placed on red alert. Almost 3000 deaths associated with cholera has been the result of the epidemic. The most disheartening reality is that children are responsible for the majority of deaths, a staggering one third of cases are those under the age of 5. The need for a substantially large amount of medical staff and aid has increased defeat thie epidemic and other diseases in the country.
Since the beginning of the war violence has escalated which has increased the number of civilians displaced in the country. The scale of which has put Yemen in an emergency state. A state which cannot be ignored. An estimated 3.6 million have been internally displaced with 80% out of 28.6 million in need of protection and assistance. Yemenis are frequently being displaced and during the worst possible time where resources are scarce, and diseases are pungent. The communities are struggling to cope with the crises and the war has amplified the struggle for survival further. Since the beginning of the war almost 4.3 million were forced to flee their homes and in 2018 alone 685,000 were newly displaced. In search for protection against the weather and war, the Yemenis face a hopeless condition in which they’re gamble with their safe being as families move from one city to another in search for refuge. A dim and unescapable choice for many who have no option but to take these risks as their lives and the lives of their children depend on it. 21 governorates across the country has been massively hit and displaced since the war escalated in Al-Hodeida region during mid 2018. Their livelihoods and self-assurance have been greatly diminished and the needy dependent on assistance as increased to 80% as compared to 50% in 2017.
HOSPITALS AND HEALTH
The health system in Yemen is on its last stand and on the verge of total collapse. The healthcare in Yemen is reaching catastrophic levels and is being attack from all angles. Yemen rely 100% on all of its medicine and the siege has caused great damage to the imports of its drugs. Officials have pleaded for help as they are totally unable to treat the victims of war and disease. Those malnourished have no source of medical treatment. Children have been the most vulnerable in these tragic turns of events and over 10,000 have been killed from attacks on hospitals and schools. In addition, more than half of the medical facilities and hospitals have been destroyed and medicine is too expensive for the majority of the population. The Health workers risk their lives and work unpaid for months with overtime just to help those caught up in the conflict. Since the beginning of the violent conflict, the already fragile health system has been put under severe strain and the needs of the population has been greatly increased. this has taken its toll over the few dedicated workers struggling to provide the essential healthcare urgently required to save the lives of the needy. On the brink of collapse and with little access to its facilities, the situation for the injured is dreary. Hospitals and health workers have faced and are continuing to face heavy bombardment from airstrikes and warfare across the country. Ceasefire is looking dim and its toll is taken out on the civilian population. As the number of sick and wounded increases, so does the demand for healthcare provisions and facilities. One story of a father who walked barefoot with his newly born child from his village to the nearest hospitals which was miles away shocked the world. After hours of walking in the scorching heat, he finally arrived to the hospital just for his child to die in the process, this was one of many cases.
Not only has the Yemeni children been robbed of their basic right to healthcare; but their education is also in jeopardy. Attacks on schools has been exacerbating since the beginning of the conflict. It is a crisis that requires a complete and miraculous turnaround. Over 2 million students are out of education, 256 schools have been completely destroyed and nearly 1520 have been damaged. These numbers are increasing. Students are at risk every day and have no protection on the journey to or within the education facilities. Most students have been prevented from going to school in fear of their own safety. Dozens of schools are being used for military purposes and the remaining schools are an unsafe means of education that cannot continue to operate. The basic right to education has been breached and children have no access to safe learning facilities. Additionally, they lack the necessary material to progress in their studies and such as school uniforms, books and equipment. Government funds are not focused on and not enough to improve or support the current education sector. University teachers are forced to exile because of the violent destruction on university buildings and teachers are pressured, underpaid and neglected. Many teachers have been working for free for months and in some cases for years as a result of the conflict. The deaths have worsened since, and thousands of students and teachers have been killed in the last 4 years.
SABA Relief is the U. K’s first registered charity exclusively focused on the raising funds for Yemen. We are doing everything we can to bring a positive change to the needy in the country. With the shortage of media coverage in highlighting the plight of the Yemeni people and their suffering, SABA Relief has primarily focused all its efforts on alleviating the struggles throughout many of its projects. Tackling issues on all fronts which includes:
- Orphan projects: The suffering of children is one of the most difficult things to witness. During these times of extreme difficulties, we work hard to support and help the needy children who have lost their parents by providing medical and financial care to as many of orphans as we possibly can.
- Food projects: an essential means of survival that the world takes for granted and is behind the majority of the suffering that the Yemeni people face. We strive to eliminate as much hunger as we can through the monthly provision of food packs for starving families
- Clean Water: Water is the crucial necessity for all life. Clean sanitation is highly scarce, and families face great risk of cholera found in alternative water. In this severe, we work hard to provide clean water to needy people in Yemen through monthly and yearly supplies.
- Health: We provide medical and financial aid for those unable to afford the lifesaving healthcare in a time where the most basic healthcare needs is cannot be met by the majority of the Yemeni people.
- Education: the passport of the future for every nation is in the cognitive development and welfare of its current youth. We support students with kits and resources with the objective of boosting their academic confidence and moral.
- Qurbani: We also support families who can’t afford the yearly Qurbani which we aim to bring a little happiness into the lives of as much families during the Eid Al-Adha period.
- Zakat: This is a charitable act and a compulsory duty for all Muslims. We collect the Yearly Zakat and distribute it to those severely in need in Yemen.
- Winter: Millions of Yemenis have been forced to leave their homes amidst the destruction and the famine throughout the country. We aim to help as many displaced civilians through the harsh winter weather by providing warm winter blankets, jackets and food packs.