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Islamic Help and UN to deliver £1.5m Yemen emergency aid

25th June, 2015

Islamic Help is to deliver more than £1.5 million of emergency aid in partnership with the United Nations in war-torn Yemen.

The programmes will involve IH staff in Yemen distributing food to nearly 140,000 families and carrying out a WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) emergency project for nearly 8,000 families displaced by the conflict.

Details of the partnership were announced as the UN and international authorities tried to broker a ceasefire between Yemen’s government and rebel Shia Houthis who captured the capital Sana’a,  forcing President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi  to flee the country.

A coalition of Gulf states led by Saudi Arabia launched airstrikes against the Houthis in March. The UN said more than 2,600 people had been killed since the bombing campaign began and an estimated 16 million of Yemen’s 26 million population was in desperate need of aid.

The conflict forced aid agencies to halt operations and worsened the already dire humanitarian situation in large parts of Yemen, the poorest country in the Arab world.

As part of its work with the UN, Islamic Help Yemen has signed a $1.5 million (£955,000) partnership agreement with the United Nations World Food Program. This involves distributing emergency food provisions in three of the most conflict-affected governorates in Yemen - Al Jawf, Amran, and Taiz.

The distribution is set to last through to the end of 2015 and will attempt to reach over 138,400 families in 8 districts of the three governorates.

An IH official said: “These areas include locations in some of Yemen’s most conflict-affected and dangerous regions. It is a testament to Islamic Help’s willingness to assist families that are often deep within inaccessible or insecure communities that remain under-served by the aid community.”

Households will be supported with a food ration that will contain a range of basic staples, including wheat and flour, pulses, vegetable oil, salt, and sugar.

The agreement comes in the wake of an increasingly dire food situation, which was cited in a recent Islamic Help Yemen assessment as having become “in critical need of assistance.”

OCHA (the UN’s Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs) in Yemen has estimated that approximately 12.9 million people continue to struggle with access to sufficient food, including most of the 1 million-plus internally displaced individuals in the country.

In addition to the food distribution, Islamic Help has also signed an agreement with UNICEF to deliver a $0.85 Million dollars (£550,000) WASH emergency response programme.

This will cover 8,000 internally displaced families in five governorates - Amaran, Al Jawf and Maarib in the north, and Al Baida and  Shabwa in the south) – over a three-month period.