The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and the United Arab Emirates have made a financial contribution through UNICEF to respond to a wide range of urgent needs of children affected by the conflict in Yemen.
The funding to the tune of US$ 150 million comes at a critical time as Yemen’s conflict has left the health and nutrition, the Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH), education and child protection systems on the verge of collapse with far reaching consequences on children.
This funding enables UNICEF to improve access to Health and Nutrition care services in the most vulnerable communities and to improve the quality of education for disadvantaged children, including those in hard-to-reach parts of Yemen. Water, Hygiene and Sanitation (WASH) services are being scaled up as well.
So far in 2018, and thanks to the contributions from other generous donors, UNICEF has treated over 61,000 children for severe acute malnutrition and has reached nearly 250,000 caregivers with infant and young child feeding counselling. With the support of KSA/UAE, UNICEF is able to reach an additional 122,000 children and 435,000 caregivers respectively. The health response is being scaled up. This year, with support from our longstanding partners, nearly 550,000 children under five and pregnant and lactating women have received primary health care; by the end of the year, UNICEF expects to increase this support and reach over 700,000 more children and pregnant women with the KSA/UAE contribution.
As part of the response to acute watery diarrhea/Cholera, and thanks to traditional donors, a total of 736 WASH Rapid Response Teams, with nationwide coverage, are now on stand-by to respond to a potential outbreak in the future. Over 2.1 million people living in high-risk cholera areas have now access to treated water. Thanks to the additional funding from KSA/UAE, UNICEF will be able to reach an additional 2.1 million people with these services.
UNICEF continues to scale up its child protection interventions and half a million people have been reached with life-saving mine risk education messages so far this year, whilst over 90,000 children and caregivers in conflict-affected areas have also received psychosocial support. A further 800,000 people and 300,000 children are being reached with mine risk education and psychosocial support respectively by the end of 2018, as a result of the newly received funds.
To support the critical educational needs of children, UNICEF has supported over 41,000 children basic learning supplies, and a further 270,000 children will now be able to receive this support.
Generosity alone, however, will not end the suffering of millions of Yemeni children. An end to the brutal war on children is an urgently needed condition. UNICEF calls therefore once again upon all fighting parties, and all countries with influence over the parties to stop the senseless war. Now!
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.