INSIDE YEMEN

Portraits of Resilience
They fled war and violence in search of safety. 
They lost their homes, family members, friends, neighbours. 
They live in makeshift shelters, not knowing when they’ll be able to return home.  
In Yemen, millions of people are trapped in the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
YET, THEY STAND AND HOPE FOR A BETTER FUTURE
Abdiyah, 37, mother of two.
"We fled Hudaydah because of the war and my daughter's health condition.
The sounds of the rockets hitting the nearby port terrified her. She would scream and could not stop.

Now that we're in Aden, she started feeling better and she started talking again. Mingling with people helped her. In Hudaydah, I was working.
Here, I don't have a job, my parents are alone in Hudaydah and we live here in one room that we share with other people. I hope to return to my city. 
I miss my parents and all our memories." 
In June 2018, some of the heaviest battles of the war in Yemen to date erupted in the Red Sea port city of Hudaydah, following months of clashes in areas south of the city.
The fierce fighting and aerial bombardments quickly threatened the city’s approximately 1.2 million inhabitants - 300,000 of whom were children.
Hundreds of thousands of civilians were on the move.
Many who fled the fighting made their way along the coast, heading south towards the city of Aden, some 12 hours away by road. 
"I miss safety. I miss my grandfather, my grandmother and my aunts. I want to return to Hudaydah."
Hala, 11.

“I have all my toys in Hudaydah, a car and dolls. What I prefer are my dolls. And my friend Maryam. I am happy when I go to school and play.

"We eat one meal a day,” says Hala’s mother. “If we eat breakfast, we do not eat lunch. And if we do not eat both meals, then we eat dinner."
The UN estimates that some 16 million people in Yemen will go hungry in 2021. Acute malnutrition threatens half of Yemen’s children under age 5 in 2021.
Escalating conflict, severe economic decline and limited humanitarian funding are the main reasons
the country is facing the risk of famine.
"I lost my uncles, my aunts, my grandfather and my grandmother because of the war."
Seham, 18.

“The most valuable thing in my life is
my family: my brothers, my father
and my mother."

“When I think of Hudaydah, I remember my house, my friends, my grandmother, my stepsister, and I cry."
Hend, 10.

“My life has changed. I miss my friends.
I used to play with them all the time. We had cars and toys, and we were playing jumprope. The friend who loved me the most is Qututa.”
Some 700 of these displaced families from Hudaydah now live in cramped conditions in an abandoned school on the outskirts of aden.  
The former school is a walled two-storey building. The outdoor playground is now a dense sea of tents and makeshift shelters, which floods during rains.
Hassan, 70, father of 10.
"The war has made us lose our humanity and value as human beings. Life in the camp is tiring. But complaining to someone other than God is a humiliation. We do not have a future. Our future is gone. I hope there will be a future for our children." 
After more than six years of brutal conflict, the scale of the catastrophe is staggering: more than 20 million Yemenis need humanitarian aid and protection.
That includes 16 million who will go hungry this year.
Farah, 12, lives with her aunt.
Her older sister, who is 17, just got married and returned to Hudaydah to live with her husband. "I learned that the leaves of trees contain chlorophyll and absorb the sun's rays. I want to be a teacher. My favourite subject is science.
I feel happy when I go to school and learn.”
“I want to be a doctor when I grow up.”
Wahba, 13.

"My mother passed away a year ago.
Since then our life has changed.
I do not study but I like to learn. I cannot study now because I am the one who plays the role of my mother in the house.”
“When I draw, I forget life here in the camp.”
Maghrebi, 19.

Maghrebi fled Hudaydah three years ago when his friend was killed and he was almost forced to join the fighting. He learned how to paint by watching his father, an artist, draw. He hopes one day to make a living from art.
“I love studying. My favourite subject is the Holy Qur’an. When I read it, I feel peace and relief.”
Ayat, 11.

Angam, 7.
She has six brothers and sisters.
She stopped going to school because her family cannot afford schoolbooks, bags and uniforms.
Children are bearing the brunt of the conflict. Thousands have been killed and maimed.
At least 2 million children in Yemen are out of school. More than 2,500 schools have been damaged, destroyed or otherwise made unusable.
Salem, 37
Salem, father of five, is a volunteer and member of the camp's community committee. "I teach people how to keep healthy and wash their hands to protect themselves. Before the war, I was working at sea. After the war, work stopped.
I did not expect to be displaced. What keeps me going is my family. I hope that the future will be better for our children, more beautiful than what we live in now."
Kamal, 35
"Our life here is one day working and 10 days without work. My family – my son and his mother – are the most important things to me.
My son has a heart disease. All I wish for is for him to be cured. He is what I am most proud of and what keeps me going.”
"If I die, who will look after my kids?"
Saeed, 45

Saeed is a father of three, with another child due this year. "I had a good home and provided well for my family, but then the war came and everything changed.
Life is very hard, and I worry all the time about the safety of my children and their health. When the children get sick I can't afford to buy them medicine, so I can only turn to God.”
Years of war and deprivation have damaged people’s immune systems. About a quarter of Yemenis who contracted COVID-19 have died – a rate much higher than the global average.
Zahra, 23
“The thing that makes me the happiest is when all of us sit down and discuss our wishes.
My sister wants to complete her studies at the university. My brother wants to get married. I miss stability. I hope we can return to our hometown."
Every month, humanitarian agencies help more than 10 million people in Yemen.
More funding right now is the fastest way to help.
Only a political solution can end the crisis altogether.


IT IS TIME FOR PEACE

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