icon icon icon icon icon icon icon

Photo essay: Rebuilding the Future

A young girl lifting here hand in class

After six years of continuous conflict, Yemeni people remain gripped by one of the worst humanitarian crises that has left millions below the poverty line and in need of humanitarian aid to survive. The prolonged conflict in the country has made it extremely challenging to continue the provision of education. An estimated 4.7 million children need education assistance, including 3.7 million in acute need. Roughly two million children are out of school. Girls are more likely to lose out on education, with 36% of girls out of school compared to 24% of boys.

An old building

Like Khalid Ibn Alwaleed school in Hubaish district of Ibb governorate, about 2000 schools in Yemen have been affected by the conflict. This includes schools that have been destroyed by airstrikes or shelling, schools that have been affected by rains and floods, and schools that are sheltering internally displaced people (IDPs). Most schools that are still functioning need support in the form of teaching supplies, furniture and teachers’ incentives. Non-payment of teachers’ salaries has been one of the biggest challenges, which has and continues to have a serious impact on access to education. Moreover, the lack of basic educational infrastructure like equipped classrooms is devastating both the education system and the chances of millions of children to access schooling.

A young boy smilling

“I didn’t feel safe,” says 13-year-old Hussien from Ibb. He fell from his school’s roof one year ago. The accident caused him to fracture his hands and he needed to stay home for three months to recover. Some parents took their children out of the school to keep them safe. Like many other schools across the country, classrooms in Khalid Ibn Alwaleed school, which is located in Bani Moein sub-district of Ibb governorate, are often no more than cold decrepit walls – no chairs, boards, doors, or windows. The wooden roof collapsed while students were in class, and they were forced to study in the open under a hot sun. During rainy days, classes were suspended. The learning environment is supposed to be safe and fun for children, but in Khalid Ibn Alwaleed school the situation was risky. Many students were injured due to the school’s poor construction.

A young girl lifting here hand in class

During crises, education, especially for girls, is considered a luxury. However, access to education is a fundamental human right for all children regardless of their gender. Moreover, ensuring that girls can go to school helps break the cycle of poverty. Research demonstrates that educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and are more likely to send their children to school.

A group of people sitting on a bench

Abdulfatah is a warm, enthusiastic and tender teacher in Ali Abdulmghani school in Sana’a – he often performs educational puppet shows which his students love. For Abdulfatah, conducting awareness activities for students at schools is an essential right for every student; and involving parents, particularly illiterate ones, teaching them the proper methods of dealing with their children plays a crucial role in encouraging students to return to school and improve their education.

A new building with a flag outside

“With the reconstruction of classrooms, there is now more space for children to learn.” says Hadhri Hefdhi, the principal of Abdullah Ibn Rawaha school in Al Meghlaf district of Yemen’s Hodeidah governorate. “Having a safe and stable space to learn significantly increased the enrolment rate and decreased absenteeism rates. Furthermore, having toilets and clean water in the school preserve students’ dignity and health. Teachers are happy with the new working environment, which makes their jobs easier and sometimes inspires them to teach voluntarily without being paid.” Fortunately for school students, with generous funds from ROTA and Germany’s Relief Coalition (ADH), CARE rehabilitated the school by constructing classrooms and toilets, providing water tanks, and installing a solar energy system.

Kids playing outside

In Ali Abdulmghani school, which is located in Sana’a, the CARE team provides psychological support and awareness sessions to students and their parents. This ensures quality education and a proper learning environment. This image shows students and teachers during an interactive learning activity in the schoolyard.

A woman talking to a group of young girls sitting on the floor

Conducting hygiene awareness in schools is a great way to teach students about good and safe hygiene practices, which they often pass on to their parents, siblings and other members of the community. Here, students in a school in Abyan are participating in hygiene awareness activities conducted by CARE with funding from the Yemen Humanitarian Fund.

Back to Top