For Immediate Release

Press Release

ADEN (August 17, 2023): Today, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) joined the Yemen Ministry of Public Health and Population and USAID implementing partner John Snow Inc. (JSI) at an event to celebrate, learn from, and reflect on the accomplishments of USAID’s Systems, Health, and Resiliency Project (SHARP) in three governorates of Yemen.

SHARP has improved the quality and accessibility of health services by strengthening the country’s health system in numerous ways. USAID Yemen Country Director, Kimberlee Bell, stated that, “USAID activities made significant contributions to Yemen’s health sector. Over the past four years, USAID has supported maternal, newborn, and child health services to reach more than 1.8 million people within 14 districts of three governorates in southern Yemen.” One of the project’s core strategies focused on the development of the health workforce.

SHARP trained and equipped 232 community midwives who subsequently delivered vital family planning, antenatal, and postnatal care to 188,243 women. Additionally, SHARP trained 629 community reproductive health volunteers to supplement the midwives’ work by raising awareness on breastfeeding, immunization, and nutrition. SHARP also trained facility health workers in 108 health facilities and supplied them with essential medical equipment, and carried out facility renovations of more than 64 health centers in Aden, Lahj, and Ta’izz. These interventions greatly improved the health system’s capacity and reach, enabling the protection of more than 14,000 children by the time they reach 12 months of age with a life-saving vaccine that protects against diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus; treatment of more than 16,000 children with diarrhea; and referral for treatment of more than 8,000 children under five years of age with acute respiratory infections.

The project continually emphasized community engagement in its strategy and implementation. This led to a deeply localized approach in coordination with local leaders and organizations. This collaborative approach enabled SHARP to reach nearly 50,000 people with health service education provided by local leaders and Imams. It also enabled the project to reach 5.5 million Yemenis with critical family planning, reproductive health, and nutrition information through social behavior change work tailored to the local context.

As we close out the SHARP activity, USAID looks forward to the continued partnership with the Ministry, local organizations, and communities to build a healthier future for Yemeni families.

After updating the national guideline for safe motherhood and training national trainers and focal points, SHARP launched a successful referral scheme in Ash Shamayatayn, leading to expansion to four more districts. This initiative saved the lives of 57 emergency and urgent maternal and newborn cases.
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