• The crisis in Yemen gives no respite and children are the most affected. In 2017, UNICEF needs US$236.6 million to provide life-saving assistance to 6.9 million children in the most vulnerable communities.
• As famine looms in Yemen, number of children at risk of malnutrition is expected to increase. Currently over 462,000 children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM), scaling of nutrition support is urgent and must reach every corner of Yemen.
• Increasing fighting in the western coast of the country has forced over 34,000 people to displace to safer locations. Displaced families are being hosted by local families or are concentrated in improvised settlements. Water, food and hygiene items are among the most urgent needs. UNICEF and partners are conducting needs assessments and as much as possible integrating WASH, health, nutrition and protection support in locations where security allows. Access is still restricted in some of the affected districts.
• Due to the security situation, at least 28 schools in Al Mukha (Taizz) are closed and some regular programme activities have been suspended.
• In response to a potential measles outbreak in Al Maharah governorate,
UNICEF and partners conducted a 6-days emergency vaccination campaign reaching 11,432 people.
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
On 31 January UNICEF launched its Humanitarian Action for Children (HAC) appeal. With the ongoing conflict and the deteriorating economic situation putting essential public services on the verge of collapse, humanitarian needs in the country are mounting and children are the most affected. Therefore, UNICEF is appealing for US$ 236.6 million to reach 9.8 million people, including 6.9 million children, with life-saving assistance in 2017.
During the first month of 2017, the situation in Yemen is far from improving. Intense hostilities have been reported in the main fronts, and hostilities have increased worryingly along the western coast, particularly in Dhubab and Al Mukha districts of Taizz governorate. At least 34,000 people been forced to displace, most of them have fled to safer areas in Taizz governorate while smaller groups have moved to locations in Al Hudaydah,3 Ibb, Lahj, Aden and Al Dhale’e governorates. As the situation is likely to continue or further exacerbate, the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) will probably increase in the coming weeks.
Due to security concerns, some regular programme activities have been suspended in the affected area, however UNICEF and humanitarian partners have started to mobilize assessment teams and response in the affected districts. Within the framework of the recently launched ACF/UNICEF Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) project, on 27 January ACF conducted a rapid assessment in Jabal Ra's district (Al Hudaydah) and Hays districts, which is hosting at least 650 displaced families, and provided urgent response including WASH as well as non-food items. Additional evaluations and sectoral assessments will be conducted in other affected location, when and where security allows.
In the current context, hostilities may increase in Al Hudaydah - the main access for humanitarian and commercial supplies to the country-, this would have serious consequences for the humanitarian response and may impact deeply the food security and livelihoods of millions of Yemenis.
The cholera and Acute Watery Diarrhoea (AWD) outbreak declared in October 2016 continued to spread in January. By the end of the month, 18,194 suspected cases had been reported, 191 cases and 99 associated deaths had been confirmed. UNICEF continues carrying out response and prevention activities in prioritized locations, additional WASH supplies will be procured and distributed under a new contribution from the Yemen Humanitarian Pooled Fund (YHPF), reaching 140,000 people in communities at risk.