UNICEF’s Executive Director’s statement at the High-Level Pledging Event on the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen
UNICEF Executive Director
While public attention waxes and wanes, the brutal war in Yemen continues unabated.
Yemen has become a living hell for children.
Millions of parents don’t know if their children will survive from one day to the next.
More than 10,200 children have been killed or injured.
Ongoing violence, mines, and explosive remnants of war are a constant threat.
Some 2.2 million children under five are acutely malnourished.
More than half a million suffer from severe acute malnutrition.
Nearly 8.5 million children lack access to safe water, sanitation, or hygiene
More than 10 million children and almost 5 million women cannot properly access health services or receive medical attention.
More than 2 million children are not in school.
Another 4 million are at risk of dropping out, especially girls.
Teachers have not been paid their salaries for more than four years.
In Yemen today, 4 out of 5 children are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance.
With no political solution in sight, these needs will only grow.
UNICEF and our partners are working across Yemen every day to reach these children and their families.
We have provided safe drinking water to 8.8 million people -- including 5.3 million children.
We are helping more than 2 million people in remote areas to access public health care centers -- and we are providing vaccination to at least 4 million children.
providing emergency cash transfers to almost 1.4 million families every quarter -- a lifeline for 9 million people.
And we are helping more than a half million children access formal and non-formal education, including early learning.
UNICEF and our partners will continue to deliver for Yemen’s children. But we are running out of funds.
UNICEF urgently needs approximately $240 million to support our work over the next six months.
Without this funding, more children will lose their education.
More children will go hungry. More children will fall sick. And more children will die.
Ladies and gentlemen, the world must not give up on Yemen and its children.
UNICEF renews our call to all parties to the conflict to keep children safe and to refrain from attacks on populated areas and civilian infrastructure.
We renew our call to keep ports and airports open to facilitate deliveries of lifesaving supplies.
Most of all, for every child in Yemen, UNICEF renews the most urgent call of all: the call for peace.
In closing, I want to share the words of Sawsan, a 10-year-old Yemeni girl: “I believe in peace and hope that one day it will prevail in my country. We live in a war and no child is safe. I wish that one day the whole world will be filled with peace.”
The world must answer her call. Now. Before it is too late.
Yemen is one of the world’s largest humanitarian crises – and children are being robbed of their futures.
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/mena
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