Armies of Liberation

Jane Novak's blog about Yemen

Yemeni child malnutrition among highest in world

Filed under: Children, Demographics, Yemen, poverty/ hunger — by Jane Novak at 8:46 am on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

(Corrected: My dyslexia or perhaps wishful thinking had the title as lowest when it should have read highest.)

In 2005 when i started paying attention to this stat, it was about 46% of children were physically stunted from malnutrition, and of course those numbers were higher in some areas specifically in Saada. And the sad reality is that now 58% of all Yemeni kids are too small for their age and many die of malnutrition.

Along with physical stunting often comes permanent brain damage, a lower IQ and cognitive faculties. Its important to reverse this trend ASAP through international cooperation and support: feeding centers, plump-n-nut, school lunches etc. The problem always was that the corrupt officials in the Yemeni regime stole the vast majority of international aid. Here in the new improved transparent Yemen, that should be less of a problem in theory. Many of the donors are in fact stepping up to the plate.

UNICEF official voices concern over child malnutrition in Yemen [24/January/2012] Saba: SANAA, Jan. 24 (Saba)- UNICEF Regional Director Maria Calivis concluded on Tuesday a two-day visit to Yemen where she saw first-hand the impact of malnutrition on children’s health.

“This year alone, half a million children in Yemen are likely to die from malnutrition or to suffer lifelong physical and cognitive consequences resulting from malnutrition if we don’t take action. Malnutrition is preventable. And, therefore, inaction is unconscionable,” Calivis said.

“Conflict, poverty and drought, compounded by the unrest of the previous year, the high food and fuel prices, and the breakdown of social services, are putting children’s health at great risks and threatening their very survival.”

With 58 per cent of children stunted, Yemen has the second highest rate of chronic malnutrition among children in the world after Afghanistan. Acute malnutrition affects as many as 30 per cent of children in some parts of the country, nearing the levels observed in south Somalia, and twice as high as the internationally recognized emergency threshold. (Read on …)

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