Shocking! Nearly half a million children dropped out of school due to escalation of conflict in Yemen

Sana’a, March 29: Nearly half a million children have dropped out of school since the year 2015 due to the escalation of conflict and cholera outbreak in Yemen, bringing the total number of out-of-school children to 2 million. Notably, the death toll has mounted to 2,250 due to waterborne disease cholera and the suspected cases have reached over 1,060,000.
According to a UNICEF assessment released on Tuesday, at least half a million children have dropped out of school since the 2015 escalation of conflict in Yemen, bringing the total number of out-of-school children to 2 million. “Almost three-quarters of public school teachers have not been paid their salaries in over a year, putting the education of an additional 4.5 million children at grave risk,” UNICEF added.

UNICEF Representative in Yemen, Meritxell Relano said, “An entire generation of children in Yemen faces a bleak future because of limited or no access to education,” adding, “Even those who remain in school are not getting the quality education they need.”
According to report, “If Not In School”, more than 2,500 schools are out of use, with two-thirds damaged by attacks, 27 percent closed and 7 percent used for military purposes or as shelters for displaced people. “The journey to school has also become dangerous as children risk being killed en route. Fearing for their children’s safety, many parents choose to keep their children at home. The lack of access to education has pushed children and families to dangerous alternatives, including early marriage, child labour and recruitment into the fighting,” the report added.

The report highlighted many facts that are given below:
  • At least 2,419 children have been recruited in the fighting since March 2015.
  • A 2016 survey across six governorates revealed that close to three-quarters of women had been married before the age of 18, while nearly half had been married before age 15.
  • Up to 78 percent of all Yemenis live in poverty: 80 percent need some form of social protection support including cash assistance.
  • An estimated 1.8 million children under 5 years and 1.1 million pregnant or nursing women are acutely malnourished, representing a 128 percent increase since late 2014.
  • 16 million Yemenis, including close to 8.2 million children, need humanitarian assistance to establish or maintain access to safe drinking water and adequate sanitation.
  • The number of people needing help to access healthcare has more than tripled – from 5 million before the war to 16 million today.
Interestingly, with over 20 million people dependent on aid, Yemen is the world's single largest humanitarian crisis, now made even worse with the outbreak of cholera. Less than half the country’s hospitals are running and less than a third of the needed medicines are available due to which conditions are getting worst.

In 2011, some 719,377 suspected cases of cholera were recorded in Haiti, and 8,767 people died, according to national figures cited by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. An epidemic late last year faded but outbreaks are frequent and made worse by the degrading of health and sanitation systems by more than two years of civil war that has also killed at least 10,000 people and displaced millions.



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