Photo: Osama and siblings. Action Against Hunger
As Yemen enters its fourth year of war, 22 million people ─ more than 80 percent of the population ─ are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance. Nearly 10,000 people have lost their lives and millions of others have been uprooted as a result of the conflict between Al Houthi forces and government forces supported by an international coalition. The conflict has contributed to the collapse of the economy and basic services, as well as an elevated risk of famine and a massive cholera epidemic. Today, living conditions in Yemen are tougher than ever, and more than 8.4 million people are on the brink of starvation. Learn more here.
Osama, 13, is the oldest of his siblings, and their only source of income. “My father died in Aden two years ago. We became orphans soon after because my mother had a nervous breakdown, became ill and died.”
After their parents died, the siblings were passed from one family member to another.
“One aunt took us in, and then married and left. We went to live with another aunt, but she too left to look after our grandmother, who lives in a different town. At this time, we were living in Hamili. When fighting reached this town, we fled to Al-Garrahi to stay with our grandfather. But we do not have a lot to live on. My grandfather also takes care of one of my uncles, who has cancer and whose medical treatment is very expensive. We, as children, had to take care of ourselves because we had no parents to do it for us.”
Osama and his family’s only source of income comes from humanitarian aid organizations and handouts from neighbors and family.
“At first, we received food aid, but we had to sell some of it to buy other things and pay the rent. Right now, we are receiving some essential supplies and direct financial aid, which lets us be more independent and meet our needs. I want to say thank you for all the efforts you are making to help displaced people.”