Food rations are helping millions of Yemenis
“I never wake them up. If I wake them up they would say they wanted to eat dinner.” Walid is a law school graduate who has been displaced from his hometown Taiz, where fighting has intensified over the last months. Like millions of public employees in Yemen, he has not received his salary since September 2016. With an erratic income working as a taxi driver, the family relies on monthly food rations — one of the few certainties in their lives.
Many others share the same burden. Amir is three years old and one of five children. His family has stayed in their home but lost almost their entire income because of the conflict. Amir’s family has next to nothing. His father is a fisherman who is now unable to go on big fishing boats as the conflict is too close to the coast of his hometown Hodeidah.
After more than three years of escalating conflict, Yemeni people continue to bear the brunt of ongoing hostilities and severe economic decline. An alarming 22.2 million people need some kind of humanitarian or protection assistance, an estimated 17.8 million are food insecure and-8.4 million people are severely food insecure and at risk of starvation.
In early January, CERF released its largest-ever allocation of USD 50 million to enable scale up of urgent life-saving assistance in Yemen. A large portion, USD 20 million, is helping the World Food Programme (WFP) to provide urgently needed monthly food rations to people like Walid and many others. With the support of CERF funding and others, WFP has increased the number of people it provides monthly food assistance for to reach more than 7.5 million.
A typical food ration includes 50 to 75 kg of flour, five to ten kilograms of beans and around four to eight litres of oil. For many people in Yemen this monthly stock accounts for one third of your entire income.
Often times, food rations are not enough. Millions of Yemenis are malnourished and need urgent treatment. Close to two million of them are children, like Sanaa who is 2 years old and weighs only 5 kg. She suffers from severe malnutrition and could barely sit through her examination at a WFP nutrition centre in Hodeidah’s Al Thawra hospital.
Humanitarian partners in Yemen continue to save lives and alleviate the suffering of the most vulnerable by providing urgent food, health care, nutrition and shelter, but much more is needed. Help us help in time so that aid reaches people caught up in crises like Yemen and many other around the world. Donate to CERF.