Islamic Relief gathers support for Yemen's displaced
Raising awareness of the humanitarian situation in northern Yemen is critical as the UN Yemen Appeal 2010 is struggling to fund the aid response. On 22nd March, the appeal had reached less than 12 percent of its target of $177.5 million.
On 24 March 2010, the visit organised by the Humanitarian Country Team, which represents humanitarian actors in Yemen, took in Sa'ada city and surrounding areas and was attended by Yemeni ministers, H.E. Mr Ahmed Al-Kuhlani (Head of the Executive Unit for IDPs) and H.E. Dr Abdulkarim Rasa'e (Minister of Health) , as well as representatives of the WFP, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNOCHA, WHO and Save the Children.
Mr Khalid Almulad, Islamic Relief Yemen (IRY) Country Director, said, "The visit to Sa'ada at this crucial time is intended to benefit those affected by the war. It was great to see the city of Sa'ada beginning to recover, but it was also clear that we need to continue to improve access to food, healthcare and safety. This joint mission is hopefully the first of many steps towards improving the humanitarian effort for the people in and around Sa'ada."
The 6-year conflict in Sa'ada left 350,000 people homeless, 100,000 of whom are in Sa'ada Governorate. The war has also had a severe impact on the health of vulnerable people, increasing rates of disease and psychological trauma, particularly amongst women, children and older people.
Assistance is needed to improve access to food, healthcare and clean drinking water, as many water sources are either contaminated or blocked. Education has also been badly affected, with the destruction of 250 of the 700 schools in the Governorate. As a result, many girls have been deprived of schooling.
Earlier this month, IRY organised a meeting between major stakeholders in the humanitarian response to the war, in support of an inter-agency approach. The newly-appointed Governor of Saa'da Mr Taha Hajer, liaised with international NGOs and UN agencies, advising them on the current situation in the region, updating them on the challenges faced by the IDPs, and explaining the possibilities for the future.
For more information please contact Ruqaya Izzidien: 0044 121 622 0719 or 07855 499 645 Ruqaya.email@example.com
Notes to editors:
Islamic Relief has been working in Yemen since 1998 and in Sa'ada governorate since 2005
IRY is the main implementing partner to UN World Food Programme in the governorates of Sa'ada, Hajja and Amran.
Islamic Relief is currently coordinating Al Mazrak 1 camp for displaced people and has recently completed the construction of Al Mazrak 3 in Haradh, Hajjah Governorate.
Islamic Relief is an international aid agency with its headquarters in Birmingham, UK. We work in 26 countries in Africa, Asia, Middle East and Eastern Europe responding to emergencies and supporting sustainable development with vulnerable communities.
For more information please visit: www.islamic-relief.com