The Prophet (saw) said, 'The best of men are the men of Yemen, belief is Yemeni, and I am Yemeni'. [Ahmad]
Today marks six years since the conflict in Yemen began. Since 2015, the ongoing civil war has created 'the largest man-made humanitarian crisis in the world' [UN], with 80% of the population - 24 million people - in need of assistance. This staggering figure includes more than 12 million children.
Alhamdulillah, your support is providing multiple types of emergency relief to the people of the Prophet (saw). Here's how your donations are saving lives:
You are protecting people from hunger
The ongoing famine in Yemen has devastated the lives of almost every single man, woman and child.
Malnutrition is widespread, with children being the worst-impacted. Today, 2.3 million Yemeni children under 5 are suffering from acute malnutrition. [UN]
Throughout this famine, your donations have supplied emergency food across the country. In Sana'a, Ta'iz, Lahj and other locations, your food parcels are providing life-saving essentials like rice, lentils and cooking oil.
Moreover, we are specifically targeting hungry children through our school feeding programmes in Sana'a, Ta'iz and elsewhere. Every £1 you are giving towards this intervention is saving the lives of vulnerable children. The daily meals include fruit, vegetables, milk, dates and bread - a hearty protection against malnutrition and illness.
Additionally, in 2020, our team in Yemen opened two bread factories - in Aden and Ma'rib! With your support, the Aden factory is now providing 10,000 loaves of bread a day, from seven distribution points in the south of Aden. It also supplies bread to two schools; previously, the teachers at these schools were taking money out of their own reduced salaries to buy bread for their malnourished students.
Meanwhile, we recently opened the Ma'rib bread factory. The ongoing conflict surrounding Ma'rib has made it difficult and dangerous to access, but the need within the city is urgent - it is now hosting one million IDPs and bread is five times more expensive due to inflation. Alhamdulillah, the bakery there is now providing 6,000 loaves of bread a day from four distribution points!
We are planning to open another bread factory in North Aden. This should be ready within six weeks in sha Allah, and will also target orphans, widows and people with disabilities.
The Prophet (saw) said, 'Indeed, when the people of the ‘Ash‘ari tribe (from Yemen) ran short of food during raids, or the food of their families in Madinah ran short, they would collect all their remaining food in one sheet and then distribute it among themselves equally by measuring it in one bowl. So, they are from me, and I am from them'. [Bukhari]
SubhanAllah, your donations are supporting some of the most blessed people on Earth, and we pray Allah (swt) rewards you generously, ameen!
You are tackling water scarcity
Before the conflict began in 2015, Yemen was already suffering from water scarcity. Most of the country has an arid climate and there is a great deal of mountainous terrain; on top of this, Yemen has an outdated water infrastructure and a general lack of water governance. Moreover, it is dependent on fuel imports, which leaves water systems vulnerable to economic shocks, as we have seen with devastating clarity during the last six years.
This includes 12.6 million people who are in acute need. These are not people who are living in remote villages or in the desert - families in major cities are suffering. Only 46% of urban populations are connected to partially functioning water networks. People are thus forced to resort to unsafe water sources and the vast majority of families can't afford to treat this water at home, especially due to inflation and soaring prices.
This appalling situation has led to increased waterborne diseases such as cholera, as well as contributing to acute malnutrition. Again, children are the most vulnerable.
Your donations continue to rehabilitate existing wells in Yemen, restoring their functionality and installing solar-powered systems so they can provide round-the-clock clean drinking water to vulnerable communities. In Lahj, Aden, Ta'iz and Ma'rib, your compassion is saving lives.
Moreover, our team in Yemen has recently begun rehabilitating major water networks in Aden and Ma'rib. In Aden, we are currently working with local authorities to supply 1.7 million people with water, by transforming the water network so it can pipe water directly into people's homes. Right now, the government-supplied water is only coming into homes every three days, as the conflict has had a truly devastating impact on water infrastructure.
But our donations are providing a powerful solution to the water scarcity in the area, and helping millions of people for generations to come, in sha Allah.
SubhanAllah, it is a huge honour to be able to provide water to the first people to drink from the Prophet's Basin in the next life! With your support, we can continue to rehabilitate water wells across Yemen, as well as boosting the water infrastructure in major cities, supplying millions with clean water, in sha Allah.
You are providing vital healthcare
Only half of all health facilities in Yemen are fully functional - and the ongoing conflict has limited access to even these facilities. Vulnerable communities are struggling to access basic healthcare due to transport costs, road blocks, advancing frontlines and general insecurity. This is a huge burden for people who are suffering from chronic illnesses such as diabetes, or severe illnesses like cancer. With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, this has become an even more serious concern.
So how are your donations helping?
Your compassion is supporting medical centres and mobile clinics across Yemen. In Ta'iz, for example, our team have established a mobile clinic which moves between seven villages, serving each vulnerable community once a week. These are mountain villages and their inhabitants have no other access to healthcare.
Meanwhile, in Abyan, you are running the Al-Kawd Clinic, providing medicines, emergency care and nutrition and immunisation services, as well as reproductive and maternal care. With the influx of IDPs, the need in Abyan has grown, and we are now rehabilitating a second medical centre, providing equipment and medicines. The two health clinics we are supporting are providing comprehensive care to vulnerable displaced families - they are staffed by doctors, nurses, nutrition specialists, pharmacists and many more specialist staff. Your donations have made it possible for us to carry out this huge medical intervention in the midst of a warzone.
Alhamdulillah, our team in Yemen is constantly working to support facilities across the country. This includes preparations to open a Covid Centre to tackle the second wave of coronavirus, supporting a clinic in Abyan with expanding their labour ward, providing essential medicines to a Kidney Dialysis Centre in Aden and opening another health clinic in Ma'rib.
None of this would be possible without your incredible generosity and we are honoured to be able to facilitate your Zakat and Sadaqah towards these blessed people:
We pray the healthcare you are providing continues to relieve burdens for the blessed people of Yemen, ameen!
You are putting children in school
Because Yemen is suffering from famine, water scarcity and lack of healthcare, education may not seem like a priority. But lack of schooling is not only ruining the country's future, it is also putting children in danger.
Children out of school are at risk of exploitation, including being forced into child labour, early marriage or joining the fighting. 40% of Yemeni children are out of school - that's 4 out of every 20 children in danger.
Those children who manage to get to school face further challenges. School meals exist in only 35% of schools and most public schools have inadequate WASH facilities, putting children at risk of malnutrition and waterborne diseases.
Ultimately, these children lose the opportunity to learn and grow in a caring and stimulating environment, becoming trapped in a life of poverty and hardship.
So how are your donations helping? By rebuilding damaged schools and expanding existing schools, you are helping children get back into the classroom.
For example, you recently provided mobile classrooms to the destroyed Othman ben Affan school, giving 200 children the chance to continue their education. Our team is also building five additional classrooms for the Al-Rawdah School in Ma'rib, which is currently struggling to educate its 3,800 students after a huge influx of IDP families.
With your support, we plan to increase our education projects in Yemen to give more vulnerable children the chance to safely learn and develop.
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Six years on, your donations are saving lives
For six years, you have stood by the blessed people of Yemen. You've gone on sponsored walks, raised awareness on social media, made countless du'as and you've kept giving. In 2020 in particular, our team in Yemen were overwhelmed by your generosity, which enabled them to pledge a staggering one million pounds to support tens of thousands of people across Yemen. Every time we have told you that the people of the Prophet (saw) need you, you have responded with more compassion and generosity than we could ever have imagined.
Today, we urge you to continue sending your life-saving Zakat and Sadaqah to the people who are beloved to Allah and His Messenger (saw):
The Messenger of Allah (saw) said, 'The acts most beloved to Allah, Exalted be He, are those which are done regularly, even if they are small'. [Muslim]
Set up your regular donation to the Yemen Emergency Fund today, to support our life-saving work in Yemen. Every month, your compassion will protect and strengthen the blessed people of Yemen.