icon icon icon icon icon icon icon

After twenty years we have a road

A dirt road with trees and bushes

The current war in Yemen has exacerbated people’s suffering and contributed to destroying most basic services in the affected areas. More than eighty percent of the population needs humanitarian assistance as they lack safe water, food security, and job opportunities. Most people have lost their jobs and incomes.

Al-Mabtana village in Hajjah governorate of Yemen has only one road which was destroyed twenty years ago. The road was built in 1995 and it was used for just five years before it was damaged. As Shawqi Abo Qahem, a 47-year-old resident of the village explains: “This road is the only and main road for our village which connects us with neighbourhood sub-districts.”

Shawqi continues: “The importance of this road is to enable residents to get to the areas of Shafer, Shamer and Abes as well as reaching the main asphalt road. I remember when it rained and floodwater filled the valley for days. No one could pass, so everything stopped in the village. There was no way to transport our harvests or goods to the central markets. In the past we spent two hours to reach the nearest hospital through the deep valley. Our relatives faced difficulties when they needed to visit us in our remote village. We tried more than once to rebuild the road, but it cost heavy efforts with no support from others and so we failed.”

With funding from the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), CARE intervened with a cash for work project, which gave temporary employment opportunities to vulnerable people in the area. They received income in return for helping to construct the road.

A dirt road with rocks and trees
The newly paved road Al-Mabtana village

Shawqi says that by rebuilding and paving the road, the villagers’ dream came true. With CARE’s assistance men had the chance to become construction workers and some even became professional workers.

Shawqi tells us that people now have a safe road that helps them to go to hospital, as well as to local markets and to the nearest cities in less than half an hour. Moreover, the road will facilitate and decrease the cost of transportation of goods and harvest. Water, food and medicine will easily be able to reach the village by car or motorcycle.

“We appreciate CARE’s efforts to help us,” says Shawqi. “We hope to continue paving some places in the road. Also our village suffer from a lack of latrines and sanitation which causes diseases for old people and children. Even our school doesn’t have enough classes – it has only three classes and one of them is the teacher’s house. We want the CARE team to come back and help us with all our needs.”

Back to Top