The humanitarian catastrophe that is not breaking the news…but should be

July 15, 2020
Internally displaced 8-year-old Yemeni boy, Ali, receives hospital treatment for injuries he sustained in an accident.

Yemen is facing the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

This is a fact.

There are more people in need inside Yemen than anywhere else in the world. Maybe you have heard about it in the news or social media.

But behind the latest news on Yemen, there are some critical facts, that few people are sharing: ­

1- The impact of COVID 19 is terrifying

COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every country in the world, but in Yemen, only 50% of the health facilities are fully functioning, sanitary systems, and general living conditions are already dangerous and families live under plastic sheeting or tents in urban settlements where social distancing is not an option. 

2- People are relying on aid to survive

Four out of five people depend on humanitarian aid to survive. This means, that over 24 million people are at risk and over 20 million people will remain severely food insecure IF humanitarian agencies are not able to deliver the right assistance on time.  Right now, over 1.2 million displaced and extremely vulnerable people in Yemen rely on UNHCR’s cash aid programme to pay their rent, afford food, water and medicine.

3- This should NOT be happening 

It’s already clear that Yemen is facing the world’s largest humanitarian crisis, so why are we writing this?

Simply put, for humanitarian agencies to be able to save lives in Yemen, funding is needed, and right now, lifesaving programmes for 2020 are just 31% funded. The Yemen Pledging Conference that took place on 2 June 2020 raised less than half the amount pledged in 2019.

4- The consequences are unimaginable

With such a funding gap, humanitarian agencies like UNHCR are left with few options to fund critical programmes. The consequences of not receiving the funding are unimaginable because giving up on people who are living in desperate need is not an option.

UNHCR must continue to deliver life-saving assistance to internally displaced families, refugees, and asylum-seekers and their host communities such as protection services, shelter support, cash-based interventions, and healthcare.

Yet without the needed funds, UNHCR will have to reduce and cut programmes, which will immediately affect more than 30,000 internally displaced and refugee families.

5- We cannot do it alone

The needs and funding gap are extremely high, but don’t let this discourage you from helping because any amount you’re willing to donate, can help us to protect one Yemeni family amid this crisis.

6- How your donation will impact Yemeni families:

  • Cash assistance to help displaced families afford food and rent
  • Emergency shelter and protection to displaced families.
  • Community outreach and early detection services to reduce the spread of COVID-19
  • Soap, hand sanitizer, and handwashing stations
  • Relief items such as shelter kits, mattresses, and blankets


#YemenCantWait and you can do something about it, help to save lives here