Report of activities in 2020
Unfortunately, the war in Yemen has continued on during this past year, causing severe suffering to the civilian population. Much of Yemen's infrastructure has been destroyed, while many of the formerly well running services, in the field of health care and education, have seriously deteriorated.
Despite the attempts of the special envoy of the UN, the warring factions do not seem to be able to come to a tenable peace agreement.
Seeing the dangerous situation on the ground, and considering the painful loss Worldwide Services has suffered in 2009, we are not ready yet to redeploy our staff members to Yemen.
Report of activities in 2021
Sadly the circumstances in Yemen have not improved, as the conflict rages on.
The UN has warned that a huge humanitarian crisis is looming, as especially many young and vulnerable children suffer from malnutrition and face starvation. Although the shops and markets are filled with supplies, the economic situation is so dire that many poor people cannot afford to buy food for their families.
Recently we heard a report of a Dutch functionary who visited Aden in November '21. Despite the massive scale of destruction, she was impressed with the resilience of the Yemeni people, who try to forge a living, while dreaming of and planning for a peaceful future in their country.
A group of young new midwives, all from Socotra, have just finished their three years training in Mukalla. From the Director of Health of Socotra they all received a complete set of instruments for the purpose of home deliveries.
Yemen is one of the oldest centers of civilization in the Near East. Its capital and largest city is Sana'a. Yemen's territory includes over 200 islands, the largest of which is Socotra, about 354 km (220 mi) to the south of mainland Yemen. It is the only state in the Arabian Peninsula to have a purely republican form of government. Yemen was the first country in the Arabian peninsula to grant women the right to vote. Yemeni unification took place on 22 May 1990, when North Yemen was united with South Yemen, forming the Republic of Yemen.
The majority of Yemen's population is divided into tribal groups, especially in the northern areas of the country where 85% of local residents belong to various tribes. There are also small groups of peoples of Turkish/Ottoman origin in urban areas. Roughly 66% of the population are Sunni Muslims following the Shafi'i school while 34% adhere to the Zaydi Shia branch of Islam with small minorities of Ismali Muslims.
A Shia rebel movement, the Houthis, emerged in the early 2000s, claiming it would fight against what it saw as the marginalization of the Shi’ites of the Zaydi sect, which prevails in the Yemeni highlands.