Yemeni mission to tackle malnutrition

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VOLUNTEERS including a member of Sheffield’s Yemeni community are joining an Islamic Relief delegation to the Arab state to help people struggling with malnutrition.

Abdulrahman Askar is among British Yemenis nationwide who have raised £140,000 over the last nine months.

The funds have been spent on 40 tonnes of emergency food distribution, clothes and medical equipment for Yemenis struggling to survive.

Abdulrahman and the other volunteers are flying out on Sunday, where they will attempt to help some of the 10 million people suffering from lack of food and water – and the effects of having to leave their homes and live in shelters and schools.

Abdulrahman – whose family comes from Yafia, Yemen - and his community held bazaars, dinners and challenges to raise funds.

He said: “We can't just stand and watch so much suffering - we have to act.

“We want to return from Yemen with knowledge about the daily lives of our brothers and sisters there, about how they are struggling to survive, and about how Islamic Relief is helping.

“We don't want people here to watch our films or see our photos and go back to sleep! We want people to do something.”

Islamic Relief says that Yemen is the poorest country in the Arab world.

It has problems of extreme water scarcity, conflict and soaring food and fuel prices.

In some parts of the country, one in three children is malnourished and life is a daily survival struggle for millions, including 100,000 displaced by recent fighting and thousands of refugees from the Horn of Africa.

Islamic Relief is working in the Al Selo area, constructing and upgrading health centres and training medical staff.

Families have been provided with clean drinking water – some for the first time.

Other projects provide food rations in towns and for people from remote areas.

Islamic Relief also has a child sponsorship programme, to support widows.