Sunday, July 08, 2018

How We Can Help the People of Yemen

In Yemen, over 22 million people are in desperate need of life-saving assistance. Half of this number are children. In fact, a child dies every 10 minutes in Yemen. Non-governmental agencies (NGOs) are trying to get people to become aware of the crisis and to care about the welfare of the Yemeni people in the midst of the country's rapidly deteriorating state, one marked by the total collapse of both the healthcare and education systems.

Yemen's devastation is largely due to the war between the Houthis and a Saudi-led coalition that is supported by the U.S. The war has ravaged almost every aspect of Yemeni life, officially making it the world's worst humanitarian crisis. There are severe water and electricity shortages, and food prices have spiked, meaning 8.4 million people are now on the brink of starvation. UNICEF reports that it is not only malnutrition that is harming children; they are also vulnerable to being both recruited as child soldiers and given over to child traffickers.

Like many people, I've been deeply troubled by the news and images coming out of Yemen. It's easy to feel despairing and powerless, but there are things we can do to make a difference. For instance, I recently renewed my membership in the Field Partnership monthly giving program of Doctor’s Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).

Perhaps you too are already helping in some way, If not, I offer the following information and ask that you consider doing so to whatever extent you can.

How you can help

The best way to make a difference in the Yemen humanitarian crisis is to donate money to aid organizations.

• You can help the people of Yemen get access to food and clean water by donating to most humanitarian aid organizations. To help an organization that specifically fights hunger, donate to Action Against Hunger.

• You can also consider giving money to medical aid organizations. In Yeman, damaged sewage systems from the war have caused a major outbreak of cholera, an infection caused by contaminated water. Young children are especially vulnerable, and particularly if they’re malnourished, as over 460,000 Yemeni children are. Cholera is easily treatable, but the extent of the outbreak and difficulty of transportation in Yemen has made it hard for doctors to treat the over 60,000 cases there. Donations to medical aid groups such as Doctors Without Borders can help medical care providers get to those in need and have the proper supplies to treat them.

• You can also help by choosing to focus on aid organizations dedicated to specifically helping children. Two examples of such organizations working to address the crisis in Yeman are UNICEF and Save the Children.

• Finally, in terms of contributing money, many organizations have pledged to help Yemenis in need in many different ways, including providing food, medical aid, education, economic empowerment, and civil management. By donating to these humanitarian organizations, you can help those suffering due to the crisis in Yemen in many different ways. Some of these organizations include Mercy Corps, the Red Cross, the International Rescue Committee, Oxfam International, and

Related Off-site Links:
She Called Her Child "Enough": A Rare Look at Yemen’s War, Where Children Starve and Hospitals Are on Life-Support – Alex Potter (The Intercept, June 21, 2018).
The Horrific Yemen Humanitarian Crisis Is About to Get a Lot Worse, U.N. Warns – David Gilbert (Vice, June 15, 2018).
Yemen Civil War: Deadly Conflict and Humanitarian Crisis Hidden in the Shadows of Syria and Iraq – Mark Saunokonoko (, June 13, 2018).
Yemen: Five Days Inside the World’s Largest Humanitarian Crisis – Matthew Carter (British Red Cross Blog, November 17, 2017).
Humanitarian Catastrophe Unfolds in Yemen as World Refuses to Act – Sophie McNeill (ABC News, February 26, 2017).

UPDATES: America's Death Trail in Yemen, and the Importance of Showing Graphic Images of War – Walker Bragman (Paste, August 24, 2018).
U.S. Bombs Are Killing Children in Yemen. Does Anybody Care? – Moustafa Bayoumi (The Guardian via Common Dreams, August 26, 2018).
Why Are U.S. Bombs Killing Civilians in Yemen? – The Editorial Board (The New York Times, August 28, 2018).

Over the years I've taken the opportunity to highlight various humanitarian crises and encourage my readers to take action. See, for instance:
How We Can Help the People of the Philippines (2013)
How We Can Help the People in the Horn of Africa (2011)
How We Can Help the People of Pakistan (2010)
How We Can Help the People of Haiti (2010)
Crisis in Sri Lanka (2009)
Prayer of the Week: "The Heart of Compassion" by Joyce Rupp
Letting Them Sit By Me

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