Press Release

New European Union funding to boost UNFPA’s life-saving services

20 February 2019

Sana’a, 20 February 2019The European Union has contributed EUR 6 million to UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, to provide emergency assistance, life-saving reproductive health and protection services to women and girls in Yemen. The funds, which will help scale up UNFPA programmes across seven governorates directly affected by the conflict, bring the total support from the European Union for UNFPA’s response in Yemen to EUR 8 million since July 2018.

“Women and girls are disproportionally at risk as fighting erupts and basic services collapse,” said Christos Stylianides, the European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management. “The EU is committed to providing life-saving assistance and relief to those most in need, and our latest humanitarian contribution to UNFPA will ensure that critical sexual and reproductive health services—as well as services for victims of sexual violence in conflict—continue.”

The latest contribution will enable UNFPA to expand the Rapid Response Mechanism that it currently leads, and help to procure and distribute 30,000 female dignity kits, which include personal hygiene items and culturally appropriate clothing. It will also help deliver WFP’s ready-to-eat food and UNICEF’s basic hygiene kits to more than 450,000 who may be displaced in the coming months.

Between January and December 2018, UNFPA’s overall response in Yemen reached more than a million women and girls with reproductive health and protection services. With the new EU funding, UNFPA will be able to reach an estimated 700,000 women and girls with life-saving emergency obstetric care and emergency supplies, including support to 32 health facilities. With only one third of health facilities providing reproductive health services across the country, this contribution will significantly help reduce the risk of death among pregnant women who develop complications during childbirth, as well as among their babies.

“The crisis in Yemen continues to take a devastating toll. More women and girls are being displaced; more women and girls are reaching out for protection services; and more pregnant women are in need of urgent emergency obstetric care,” said UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem. “We are therefore extremely thankful to the European Union for this generous contribution, which will allow us to help hundreds of thousands of women and girls in need of these life-saving interventions.”

 

For more information, please contact

Fahmia Al-Fotih: Tel: +967 712224016; al-fotih@unfpa.org      

Lankani Sikurajapathy: Tel. +94773411614; sikurajapathy@unfpa.org