Yemen Humanitarian Fund: A lifeline in the world’s worst humanitarian crisis

The Yemen Humanitarian Fund (YHF) continues to provide a lifeline to millions of Yemenis trapped in the worst humanitarian crisis. “The human cost and the humanitarian impact of this conflict is unjustifiable,” said UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Yemen, Lise Grande, in a recent statement, stressing that three-quarters of the population remain in dire need of assistance.

Since January 2018, the YHF has received $122 million from 22 generous donors. This has allowed national and international partners to scale up their life-saving and life-sustaining activities.

Through its First Standard Allocation, the Fund has allocated US$90 million to respond to the needs identified in the re-prioritized Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) and to provide life-saving assistance to people in newly accessible areas and areas facing severe access constraints. In support of the critical role that national front-line partners play in the operation, a dedicated window for national NGOs is being established for this round.

Between June and July, the Fund had already allocated $97.3 million to scale up nutrition and health services, cash assistance, emergency reproductive health services and de-mining activities in Al Hudaydah Governorate, which was heavily hit by recent airstrikes.

Mobile medical teams save people’s lives every day

Yemen-Hajjah: Mohsen outside his villageafter being discharged from RI’s clinic. Credit: Relief International/Maha Ahmad

Mohsen almost died when he contracted cholera, which has been rampaging through the countryside, claiming thousands of lives.

A primary school teacher in Hajjah, a remote, mountainous area in the north of Yemen, like most people who were employed by the government before the war, Mohsen has no salary and the school he worked in had to close – no equipment, no teachers, no supplies. Now he sells vegetables, riding from village to village on his motorcycle, and the children he once taught stay home. He makes just enough money to feed his family and buy fuel for his motorcycle but there is nothing left for even basic healthcare.

Mohsen was taken immediately to a remote village where Relief International (RI) had temporarily established a mobile medical clinic. Unconscious, he was so severely dehydrated from vomiting and diarrhea that he had slipped into a coma and was just hours away from death.

Al Mazraq, Hajjah: A family displaced by conflict. Tens of thousands of people have to shelter in spontaneous settlements and public buildings. Credit: OCHA

In Hajjah, tens of thousands of displaced people shelter in spontaneous settlements and public buildings. Many are destitute and in dire need of healthcare, food, drinking water, and other basic needs. Many more have suffered the trauma of losing family members to the conflict and losing their homes and jobs. But the situation in Hajjah right now embodies conditions across the country.

RI’s medical staff immediately started treating Mohsen with intravenous fluids to stabilize him. Within hours, his condition had improved but he spent three days in our care recovering. With support from the Yemen Humanitarian Fund (YHF), RI is able to operate mobile medical teams which travel to remote areas in Hajjah, providing free basic health care and free referrals to specialist health facilities.

Yemen is literally being torn apart. Schools, homes and health infrastructures have been destroyed. In a context where there are no ambulances, services are sparsely spread, and people are struggling to put food on the table, projects like this save people’s lives every day.

“If it were not for medical staff, I would not be alive today”, Mohsen said. “I survived only because of them.”

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