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Kinder mit ZOA Wassereimern im Jemen

We are here in Yemen

In 2015, fighting broke out between Houthis and government troops in Yemen. Now, several years later, Yemen is the site of the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. Not only over 4 million people have fled their homes, but 19 million people, more than 50 per cent of the population of Yemen, are estimated to be food insecure.

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The worst humanitarian crisis in the world

people in Yemen are in need of humanitarian assistence
people are internally displaced
of the displaced are women

Integrated approach

Emergency relief and longer term recovery

Once there were hopeful developments in Yemen. During the Arab Spring of 2011, widespread demonstrations forced the resignation of an authoritarian ruler. Unfortunately, the new, predominantly Sunni Muslim government did not succeed in uniting the country and violence erupted. Over the years, the conflict evolved in a complicated war, involving many parties. Yemen is being crushed by geopolitical violence.

ZOA has been working in Yemen since August 2012. Our work in Yemen is complex. And yet, we specifically want to be here. “The world has not forgotten Yemen, but is ignoring it", says ZOA staff member in Yemen, Jaap van Kranenburg. "We do not want to ignore Yemen. One of the world’s greatest crises, one that was called the greatest humanitarian disaster for years, should not be forgotten and certainly not ignored. We are here because we consider the Yemeni people. We are here because we can help. We are here because we are well positioned to help with a good team.”

Our primary focus is offering aid that combats hunger and thirst, preferably also in the long run. We focus on displaced persons and on the communities where they are received. Our approach combines food security and livelihoods interventions, WASH and cash based assistance. Our working areas are in the north of Yemen: Sana’a, Amran,  Hajjah and Al Mahwit Governorates, and in the south of Yemen: Aden, Lahj and Al Dhale’e Governorates.

Sustainable solutions in the field of WASH

Bad hygiene and a lack of clean drinking water pose a threat to vulnerable, malnourished people. That is why we make systems for collecting rainwater, construct water wells, and build sanitary facilities in schools, villages, and houses.  ZOA uses solar powered pumps to run water pumping units that provide portable water to thousands of households. At household level, we repair rooftop rainwater harvesting structures. We also provide families with water tanks to supplement the water collected from communal systems. Besides, colloidal silver water filters are given to families as a user-friendly mechanism for household water treatment. We also give training about the importance of good hygiene to prevent diseases like cholera. In our interventions, we always pursue sustainability. In Yemen, instead of water trucking, ZOA prioritizes the rehabilitation and /or construction of water infrastructure like rainwater harvesting cisterns, community rainwater harvesting tanks, boreholes and pipe networks.

The impact of our work in Yemen in 2022

With a team of 50 staff members, we directly supported 741,000 people

people improved their access to clean water
people improved their food security
of our budget was spent on relief

Food security and livelihoods 

Emergency aid takes the form of cash assistance so people can determine for themselves which of their family’s needs are most pressing. We also have cash-for-work projects, which enable the restoration of basic community infrastructure and assets and give poor families a chance to earn income. Besides this, we support people to plant vegetable gardens.

Children in Yemen holding a lamb

Working together

Donors and partners

In Yemen, ZOA uses a dual implementation approach that includes direct implementation of project activities and partnership with local NGOs. Due to insecurity, some of ZOA’s programme areas are inaccessible to our staff. In situations like these, we use the experience, networks and credibility of local NGOs.

Our work is funded by the USAID BHA, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, UN-OCHA (Yemen Humanitarian Fund), the European Union, Stichting Mitswah, EO Metterdaad, ZOA Netherlands. In Yemen, ZOA works with partners like Responsiveness for Rehabilitation & Development Foundation (RRD) and the  Sustainable Development Foundation (SDF).

A woman in Yemen

Monia Hassan, Yemen

Fortunately, ZOA gave me a monthly amount of money for a period of six months. I can buy food so that my children are not hungry. Now I can be there for them again.