Only 15 per cent of children are eating the minimum acceptable diet for survival, growth and development.
The high levels of malnutrition are compounded by lack of food, poor feeding practices at home, sub-optimal functioning of the health, water and sanitation systems, disease outbreaks and deteriorating economy. Around 80 per cent of Yemenis are estimated to be in debt and struggling to pay for food, water, transportation and vital health services. With the deepening economic crisis, 1.8 to 2.8 million children are at risk of being pushed into acute food insecurity and many more children could fall into life-threatening severe acute malnutrition.
Almost 2 million cases of children under the age of five suffering from acute malnutrition are estimated, including 360,000 from severe acute malnutrition (SAM).
The nutritional status of women of child bearing age is also a matter of significant concern in Yemen. Since 1997, there has been no improvement in the nutritional status of women and almost a quarter of women are malnourished. Maternal malnutrition increases the risk of poor pregnancy outcomes including obstructed labour, premature or low-birth-weight babies and postpartum haemorrhage.