UNDP continued to Strengthen Resilience of Yemeni Communities in 2017

Yemen is facing an unprecedented political, humanitarian, and development crisis. Yemen’s post-Arab Spring transition did not conclude peacefully and spiraled into a full-blown war in March 2015.

Yemen is now considered to be the worst humanitarian crisis in the world with seven million on the brink of famine, over 3 million internally displaced and an expected 1 million cases of cholera by the end of this year. Since March 2015, health facilities reported 8,757 conflict related deaths and over 50,610 injuries.

The humanitarian crisis remains extremely widespread: an estimated 22.2 million people in Yemen need some kind of humanitarian or protection assistance, including 11.3 million who are in acute nee. An estimated 17.8 million are food insecure, 16 million lack access to safe water and sanitation, and 16.4 million lack access to adequate healthcare.

Conflict, displacement, and economic decline are placing immense pressure on essential basic services and are accelerating the collapse of the institutions that provide them. The public budget deficit expanded significantly since the last quarter of 2016, leading to a discontinuation of the provision of operating costs for basic social service facilities. There have been major disruptions in payment of public sector salaries since August 2016. As a result, humanitarian assistance is now forced to fill some of these gaps and is increasingly stretched beyond its scope and remit.

Partnership and Resources Mobilization

Against this backdrop, UNDP focused on enhancing livelihoods and restoring of essential basic social services complementing the ongoing humanitarian effort in Yemen. We are not doing this alone. Important partnerships have been fostered with key development partners which include the World Bank, the European Union, USA, the Netherlands, Germany and Japan to support our activities. In 2017, UNDP delivered USD 105 million, covering all 22 governorates and all 333 districts providing support to millions of beneficiaries.


Enhancing Livelihood Opportunities and restoring Essential Basic Social Services

Amran — Yahya Shaiban is working as part of UNDP’s #Cash4Work activities to pave a rain storm drain in Amran to protect his city from floods. ©UNDP Yemen
“I’m happy I have a job shaping stones for Al-Saileh pavement in Amran city and earning around 4,000–5,000 riyals a day to feed my family and pay for our home rent.” Yahya said.

Yahya Shaiban is one of 88,815 workers received wages across over 300 districts spread throughout the country under Yemen Emergency Crisis Response Project (YECRP). Over 1.5 million working-days have been created to support the most vulnerable populations including IDPs, Women and Youth. Around 97,000 Cubic Meter of water schemes were structured and/or rehabilitated and 84.65 km length of roads were improved and 667 classrooms were rehabilitated which helped over a million people with access to basic services.

Yahya was offered work to pave a rainstorm drain benefiting around 1,056 people in the area in term of protecting their homes and properties as well as make access to areas easier during rainy seasons.

Hodeidah — Rural women are attending health/nutrition awareness and training sessions. ©UNDP Yemen

855 Young Women employed as health/nutrition workers. Training and awareness sessions have been conducted benefitting more than 13,400 women who also have received monthly cash assistance. Our nutrition interventions helped in identifying severe and acute malnutrition cases and referring around 19,000 children and over 6,000 pregnant and lactating women for treatment.

Hodeidah — Aisha participated in #cash4work activities building new extra schools’ classes for their communities. ©Sustainable Development Foundation

Aisha is one of 800 vulnerable youth who benefited under the Enhanced Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY) in Hajjah and Hodeidah Governorates. They were engaged with a 30-days #Cash4Work scheme focusing on restoring services for communities, such as rehabilitating wells and roads and road cleaning campaigns. The youth receive a daily wage and enrolled in business and life skills training to build their capacities in setting up businesses in their communities.

More than 70,000 emergency employment days have been created through #Cash4Work activities. 2,345 vulnerable women and men directly benefited with the provision of USD 300 for 30 days of employment.

Enhance Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY) is a three-year joint programme implemented by FAO, ILO, UNDP, and WFP, funded by the EU, to enhance the resilience and self-reliance of crisis-affected rural communities in 4 governorates of Yemen.


Business Training and Self-Employment

Aden — Mohammed Salem has more stable income after he received vocational training in “Maintenance of Refrigerators and Air Conditioning” through Yemen Stabilisation Programme. ©UNDP Yemen

420-Youth, (50% females) from Aden through Yemen Stabilization Programme (YSP), have been equipped with the business skills through vocational training programme. The training aimed to enhance participants’ business leadership and help them prepare their business plans to start up their own micro-businesses. Through the new business grants contests 390 youth received financial grants of USD 800 each to open small businesses in Aden districts. This initiative will support job creation, not only for youth but also family members.

Hajjah — 800 youth ( 37% are women) finished 16-days training in life and business skills during August 2017. ©Care Yemen

3,064 men and women in Hajjah, Hodeidah, Lahj, and Abyan governorates were equipped with business and technical knowledge toward promoting their entrepreneurship skills in reviving community basic services like Access and Education.

Youth were enrolled in training sessions under Enhance Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY) to build their capacity to develop and manage social business plans. The created businesses will support youth engage in sustainable self-employment contributing to local economy recovery.

Hajjah — Otrah, a Role Model Beekeeper Entrepreneur for All Women, is taking care of her business and expanding from 16 to 30 honey hives within a year. © Sustainable Development Foundation
“I first started my project with 16 bee hives provided by ERRY JP, but in less than a year, I managed to have 30 hives. If you want to ask me how this turning point has positively impacted our life, then you simply need to see how my little two kids has become happier and healthier.” Otrah said.

Amount of USD 1,191,600 was invested in creation of 1,017 businesses in Abyna, Hajjah, Hodeida and Lahj governorate as part of the 3x6 approach under Enhance Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY).

Hodeidah — Ghada is one beneficiaries and has become one of the most wedding designers and organizers in her area. © Sustainable Development Foundation

Ghada is one of the beneficiaries who have participated in the opportunities offered by the ERRY project. She has become one of the most famous wedding designers and organizers. The quality of her work enabled her to get contracts for number of parties and wedding events. Her work covered many activities and campaigns in different places of the District of Bajel.

“I broke the barrier of the future and now I became aware of the standards of this profession.” Ghada emphasized.
Hodeidah — A Beneficiary is performing sewing and embroidery in her shop. © Sustainable Development Foundation

377 women directly benefited from the emergency employment and business creation activities under Enhance Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY).


Restoration of Productive Assets

Sana’a — Saidah Alajl is one of the farmers benefited from YECRP project which equips farmers with new agricultural skills and techniques. ©UNDP Yemen

842 farmers supported so far to improve their agricultural methods and production using modern farming techniques and improved practices to increase productivity.

“I used to apply the old flooding irrigation method in my farmland and that was costing me a lot as I had to buy fuel regularly to fill the water pump to irrigate my okras. Now I’m using the new drip irrigation with plastic cover saving water and keeping the soil fertilized for long time. Since I’ve used the new irrigation, my okras already look better. As my productivity has increased, I’ve hired seven women to help me.” Saidah explained
Sana’a — Farmer Naif, a story of renewed hope, after he received support from the YECRP project. ©SMEPS

In addition to support to farmers, 88 agricultural and environmental interventions have came to true to strengthen communities agricultural needs. 
 Furthermore, 62 crop farmers were supported with solar water pumps and modern techniques to improve quality and productivity.

Ahmed Basharif is testing a Fish Finding Detector received as part of USAID and UNDP support to fishers©SMEPS

In supporting fishermen as part of a plan to restore small productive assets, 290 fishermen were trained on modern technologies to improve their daily productivity. 200 GPS and fish finding devices were procured and distributed for fishers to increase the catch and reduce the amount of fuel used.


Promoting Social Cohesion

Lahj — VCC Council is gathering to discuss other important village development issues after main road to the Lesha’ab village has been paved.

30-Village Cooperative Councils have been established in Habil Jabr District aiming to build and create resilience and self-reliance of the affected communities

186 Village Cooperative Councils (VCC) with 1901 members were re-established throughout targeted governorates by ERRY to address community priorities. 520 self-help and compact initiatives were undertaken by the communities, benefiting more than 83,835 individuals through range of community infrastructure projects.

163 Insider Mediators recruited after being trained on Dialogue Design and Facilitation, and Conflict Transformation. 60 community based initiatives to resolve conflicts were identified and 21 of them were supported to resolve conflicts related to water infrastructures.

Under YECRP, 672 teachers, school principals and social workers trained on psycho-social support, social peace and conflict management and provision of psychological support to children dramatized by the conflict.


Adapting to Climate Change & Providing Solar Energy to Maintain Basic Social Services

Abyan, Lahj & Hajjah — providing key services facilities with solar energy to keep them functioning during crisis. © Ryadah Org.

52 health centers and 52 schools were provided with solar energy under ERRY which enabled them to continue serving war-affected population. 3200 vulnerable households received portable solar devices to support them during their daily lives, and especially their children, to continue their education. 
 32 local government offices received solar systems to be able continue to conduct local governance activities.


Saving Lives & Restoring of Economic Productive Assets

Amran — UNDP contributed to partial resumption of cement production in the Amran Cement Factory (ACF). ©YEMAC

Under the Mine action program, UNDP, through the YEMAC, dispatched a mine action team to Amran Cement Factory (ACF) to survey the contaminated areas in the quarry. The team cleared UXOs posing a threat to the extraction operations and prevented resumption of cement production.
 As a result of clearance activities, the factory managed to resume part of its production, packaging, and sales. It enabled the factory to pay some of the salary arrears to the employees. UNDP continues to closely work with YEMAC and the factory management towards the factory’s resumption of full production activities.

Sa’adah — De-miners removing an unexploded aircraft bomb Factory. ©YEMAC

UNDP’s Mine Action program aims to reduce or eliminate the impact of UXOs (Unexploded Ordnance) on the civilian population, infrastructure and economy. Each piece of UXO denies the population’s access to land and infrastructure with the potential to inflict multiple life altering injuries and deaths. As of November 2017, 287,611 ERW (including Mines, Cluster Munitions, Rockets and Missiles) were cleared in 14 governorates which cleared 6,277,941 square meter of lands. 717,776 people have been directly benefited from the project support by receiving awareness session and support.


Definitions and Acronyms

The Yemen Emergency Crisis Response Project (YECRP) aims to mitigate the impact of the current crisis on local households and communities and assist their recovery through increasing short-term employment and livelihoods opportunities, restoring key service delivery through small-scale infrastructure, and reviving the local private sector. YECRP is implemented by UNDP in partnership with the Social Fund for Development and the Public Works Project.

Enhance Rural Resilience in Yemen Programme (ERRY) is a three-year joint programme implemented by FAO, ILO, UNDP, and WFP, to enhance the resilience and self-reliance of crisis-affected rural communities in four governorates of Yemen.

The Small and Micro Enterprise Promotion Service (SMEPS) is a young SME development agency established as a subsidiary of the Social Fund for Development (SFD) in Yemen.

The Yemen Executive Mine Action Centre (YEMAC), under the National Mine Action Committee (NMAC), is the coordination and implementation body that executes a full range of mine action projects.

Yemen Stabilization Programme (YSP) aims to generate knowledge on local stabilization needs and restore the disrupted livelihoods of the affected population that would yield to the strengthening of community-based protection mechanisms mainly focusing on women and youth.