USAID Yemen Education Fact Sheet

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Yemeni girl raises her hand
Out-of-school children attend a class supported by USAID in partnership IRC at Out-Al Nahdah School in Al Azareq district, Al Dhale’e governorate.
Photo Credit: Anas Mohammed, IRC Yemen

USAID is reaching vulnerable children in Yemen and providing critical education assistance to help schools withstand the immediate impact of the conflict.

Yemen is suffering the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, exacerbated by its ongoing conflicts. USAID development assistance in Yemen bridges the relief-to-development continuum and strengthens Yemen’s resilience through programs that stabilize the economy, rebuild basic education and health systems, increase social cohesion, and improve water sector access and management.

As the conflict in Yemen continues, millions of children lack reliable access to school due to widespread displacement, damage to school facilities, lack of educational resources, and general insecurity in the country. Many children have also been exposed to serious psychological trauma, which puts their ability to learn and retain lessons at risk. An estimated 2,000 schools damaged during  conflict are currently hosting internally displaced people (IDP), or are occupied by armed groups. Of the more than 4.2 million IDPs in Yemen, approximately 2 million are school-aged children and youth, which further contributes to education gaps. General insecurity in the country and a chronic shortage of funds affect the Ministry of Education’s ability to provide basic education services.
 

These challenges have been compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic. To keep children and their families safe, the Ministry of Education (MOE) closed schools for much of 2020 and 2021, disrupting learning for 5.8 million children. USAID, other donors, and civil society partners are working with the Ministry of Education to strengthen distance/remote learning programs, provide personal protective equipment for teachers, and reduce overcrowding in classrooms to support safe school reopening plans.

USAID’s Response and Results

In partnership with the Ministry of Education, USAID’s education programming addresses the immediate needs of basic education service delivery and the long-term objective of rebuilding a functioning education system.

 

The goal of USAID’s flagship Gateway to Education activity is to support a stronger, resilient education system which provides quality formal education for Yemeni children. The activity supports safe and equitable access to education; improvements in teaching and learning materials and classroom practices; upgraded facilities and more educational supplies; and stronger institutional support for the education system. Activities target vulnerable households through remedial education; female empowerment through the formation of girls’ clubs and student government in schools; increased access for children with disabilities through the provision of adaptive technologies; and better teacher competencies through training. Since January 2021, Gateway has delivered 861 new desks and 290 whiteboards with student and teacher kits for 176 schools; trained 923 Father and Mother council members (similar to Parent-Teacher Associations) on community mapping and school development planning; assessed 1,636 children identified by schools as potentially having a disability; supported referrals for 741 children identified as having a disability to appropriate social and medical services; organized 44 remedial education classes for 4,383 at risk students; and established 38 girls groups and 44 student councils through election processes in 82 schools.

USAID restores access and facilitates re-entry to basic education through the Yemen Basic Education/Emergency Crisis Response Project. USAID interventions include: a back-to-school campaign that equips students with school bags and basic learning supplies to help foster greater enrollment rates; minor school  repairs to ensure each student has an environment conducive to learning; a pilot self-learning program for children in high-risk areas who cannot access schools; psychosocial support to help children overcome trauma by developing positive coping mechanisms; and the development and implementation of safety and emergency plans to help schools protect students and serve as safe spaces for children. This activity has supported more than 1.3 million conflict-affected children. USAID assistance has provided 33,800 desks and 882 whiteboards, trained 1,764 teachers, and reached more than 16,000 adolescents with life-skills training to prevent and respond to child marriage, child labor, forced armed recruitment, and other negative coping mechanisms prevalent in Yemen.

Through the School Doors program, two activities – Improving Access to Quality Education in Yemen and Education in Emergency: A Bridge to Development and Resilience – support enrollment of out-of-school and over-age children and youth into accelerated learning and remedial learning spaces. This support of non-formal education programming has provided safe learning spaces for nearly 16,000 out-of-school children to date.

Last updated: April 25, 2022

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