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We have been working in Yemen since 2010. Yemen, the poorest country in the Middle East, faces deep, systemic problems that have resulted in protracted conflicts throughout the country for many years.
In March of 2015, violent clashes between government and non-government forces erupted, fueling ongoing warfare that has since forced almost 3 million people from their homes and left 17 million people — 68 percent of the population — in need of humanitarian aid. Get the quick facts about the crisis in Yemen ▸
Yemen is now at risk of famine. 14.1 million people, more than half the population, do not have enough to eat. Two years of war have devastated huge segments of the population and exacerbated food insecurity.
The cholera epidemic in Yemen is now the largest and fastest-spreading outbreak of disease in modern history. In May of 2017, authorities declared a state of emergency in the capital city of Sana’a following an outbreak of cholera, compounding the already dire situation in much of the country. 2,000 cholera deaths have been reported since April 2017. The numbers of affected individuals is at more than 500,000 and growing exponentially — the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 7.6 million people in Yemen live in areas at high risk of cholera transmission. By the end of the year, at least 1 million people, including 600,000 children, are likely to be affected.
Because cholera is a water-borne illness, we’re working to address this deadly issue by rehabilitating community water infrastructure and improving sanitation and hygiene practices.
Agricultural production has drastically declined while the cost of living has risen 40%. Yemen relies on imports for 90% of its food supply. As conflict intensifies, food access will only become more limited and the situation more desperate. Get the quick facts about famine ▸
The situation is already so dire that a child under the age of five dies every ten minutes from preventable causes, including hunger, disease and violence.
- Emergency response: Providing food and hygiene supplies, and increasing access to water and sanitation for the most vulnerable families.
- Agriculture & Food: Distributing food vouchers. Helping sesame farmers increase their yields.
- Water: Constructing and rehabilitating water systems, irrigation channels, toilet facilities and other community infrastructure. Promoting proper hygiene in schools and communities.
- Economic opportunity: Providing urgently needed income through cash-for-work projects and creating new livelihoods through cash transfers and vocational training.
All stories about Yemen
Yemen: Entrepreneurs play a key role in fighting malnutrition
How do you help the hungry eat now and have enough food for the future? Lessons from our food voucher program in Yemen.
Yemen: Food vouchers do more than alleviate hunger
After tragedy, a mother is able to feed her children and find the strength to look forward.
Yemen: Fetching water for families in Taiz
An increased supply and new distribution programs help secure clean water — and provide jobs in Yemen's poorest communities.
Yemen: A boy's thank you
In Taiz, a young boy stands by the poem he wrote to thank our team for helping his family get clean water.
Yemen: Clean water for the most vulnerable families
Mercy Corps teams are helping families access clean water in some of the poorest areas of Taiz, which has been rocked by violent uprisings and subsequent price inflation.
Yemen: The promise of youth
I live in Aden, Yemen. I have high hopes for my community and believe we can help it become peaceful and prosperous. But the crises that have engulfed Yemen in the last year have had a negative effect on my people.
Yemen: How we can turn the tide
Some say Yemen is on the edge of abyss. But there is a tremendous opportunity in Yemen — especially if we can harness the potential of the youth.
Yemen: Beyond protests, a country working to thrive
Yemen does not have a movie theater and only 11% of the population has access to the Internet. Nonetheless, “Innocence of Muslims,” the now notorious film that mocks Prophet Muhammad, generated violent protests in the capital of Sana’a this week.
Yemen: Protecting children in the crossfire
Seven-year-old Hadiel looked forward to starting first grade last year at Nusaybah school, in the heart of Yemen’s capital of Sana’a. But the presence of heavily armed soldiers and certainty of violence kept her home.
Yemen: A witness to distress in beautiful land
Since Mercy Corps began working in Yemen in October 2010, we have kept our main office in the capital city of Sana’a. I see more and more women and young girls begging for food on the streets. Last month, nearly 100 soldiers were killed here by a suicide bomb.