“This is so critical to us. We cannot afford to lose another child!” With these words, Ashwak Althabibi, a 36 years old mother of 6 children, shared the story of losing her daughter Nora last year. "We couldn’t get her to the hospital soon enough, and by the time we found transportation and reached the hospital, Nora was gone” she added with tearful eyes. She composed herself to say, “I just want to thank the vaccination team for their perseverance. They come on a regular basis and vaccinate all my children. It’s a great consolation for us to feel such care.”
“No transportation can get there and it is the team’s responsibility to reach this population and to make sure all their children get vaccinated during this hard time,” commented Hana Ali Nagi, a 19-year-old health volunteer in the vaccination campaign.
Since the start of the current conflict, , and the interruption of medical supplies. Many foreign health personnel have left, and even the most basic needs for a healthy existence—access to water, sanitation, and food—have become, for most Yemenis, a daunting, daily task.
Gone too are the days when the victims of war were mostly soldiers: , which means .
, and hundreds of thousands put at more risk of death from disease or malnutrition. , while 2.2 million are in urgent need of humanitarian aid to prevent their nutritional status from deteriorating.
The last two decades have been a prolonged period of political instability and economic fragility in Yemen, a country with both limited natural resources and an underdeveloped institutional capacity for project implementation.
But one lesson from previous World Bank Group experience in the health sector, is that government ownership, simple project design, and donor coordination should come top of the list of ways to make things work.