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Gender-based violence

The escalation of the conflict and the ensuing humanitarian repercussions have further weakened the position of women and girls in Yemeni society, leading to a near erosion of their protection mechanisms and increasing their vulnerability to violence and abuse.

Among the 4.3 million people displaced in the last three years, about half of the displaced are women, 27 per cent of whom are below age 18.  Their coping mechanisms are stretched to the limit and they are paying the heaviest price, as is so often the case in humanitarian crises.

With limited shelter options, displaced women and girls tend to suffer most from lack of privacy, threats to safety and limited access to basic services, making them ever more vulnerable to violence and abuse.  Displaced girls are more likely to lose access to schooling as families with limited resources de-prioritize their right to education.

Conflict-related loss of male breadwinners in Yemeni families adds to the economic burdens women face, especially in the case of female-headed households, 21 per cent of which are headed by females under the age of 18. The pressure is even more severe where women or girls suddenly find themselves responsible for providing for their families when they themselves have been deprived of basic education or vocational training that would equip them for the labour market. In the absence of adequate empowerment and support, women and girls readily become vulnerable to negative coping strategies such as child marriage and child labour.

UNFPA, through its partners, works across the country to ensure the protection of women and girls: 

Key Interventions:

  • Provide medical supplies including post-rape treatment kits or survivors of sexual violence
  • Respond to different forms of violence through the provision of psycho-social support, legal aid, access to safe houses and referrals to health and other services
  • Engage men and boys  to enhance mitigation of  different forms of violence at the community level
  • Strengthen women's protection Information and Management System
  • Strengthen community awareness about issues related to different forms of violence, and available relevant services
  • Establish referral pathways, protocols and capacity building of service providers
  • Provide support services and livelihood opportunities for survivors of various forms of violence
  • Lead coordination of women's protection response through the women's protection sub-cluster within the UN