A young girl in Yemen stands in darkness but smiles at the camera

© ICRC/Mohammed Yaseen

At six years old, Soria is too young to understand why her family had to flee their home in Yemen.

“I managed to bring along one of my toys,” she said.

“But I don’t know the fate of my other toys.”

Escaping bombing and fighting, Soria and her family are among 2.2 million people who had to abandon their homes in Yemen’s ongoing conflict.

Many buildings have been reduced to rubble. Others are now simply too dangerous to live in.

Yet even in the midst of all this, most people are just trying to keep going.

Here are a few of their stories.

A young girl in Yemen climbs out of a dug-out cave with her father just visible behind her

© ICRC/Nayef Rahma

This little girl and her father are living in an underground cave they dug to replace their destroyed home.

Yemen was one of the poorest countries in the Middle East before the current conflict intensified in March 2015.

Now, approximately eight million people have lost their livelihoods, meaning that poverty and hunger are getting much worse.

Nearly 70 per cent of Yemen’s people currently need humanitarian aid.

A woman wearing a scarf over her head and face combs her child's hair as a younger child holds onto her back and a baby rests on the floor

© ICRC/Mohammed Yaseen

Other families, like Zamzam Murshed and her three children, now live in tents.

“My husband left eight months ago to take part in the fighting,” Zamzam says.

“There has been no news of him since. I hope he is still alive.

“My dreams are modest: I dream of a peaceful life. I dream of going back home.”

Yahia Hizam adds more bricks to the door of an underground shelter while his wife holds the bricks from below

© ICRC/Mohammed Yaseen

To keep his children safe, Yahia Hizam and his family fled their home as the fighting approached.

“I am unemployed. Our life is very difficult at the moment,” he said.

He tries to keep busy with various outdoor jobs.

“I keep wondering what I can do for my children to make things easier for them.”

Child malnutrition was a problem in Yemen even before the current conflict escalated.

Now, many fathers like Yahia are watching their wives and children suffer. Around 3.3 million mothers and children are acutely malnourished.

A man carries a large white sack and a woman carries boxes on her head as they walk up a mountain with a heavily laden donkey

© ICRC/Akram Al-Rasni

Even before the conflict, Yemen imported 90 per cent of its food.

Yemen’s rough terrain and damaged infrastructure make it difficult to reach people in remote areas.

Now, because of the conflict, a staggering 14 million people don’t have enough to eat. This is over half of the country’s population.

That’s equal to nearly twice the number of people who live in London.

A man wearing a Red Cross pinney gives a food parcel to another man and puts his arm on the man's shoulder

© ICRC/Sami Ahmed

The Red Cross and our partners the Yemen Red Crescent Society have helped over two million people. Many of them have left their homes because of the fighting.

Around 180,000 people have received food rations such as rice, beans, lentils and oil.

We have also worked with 29 bakeries in Taiz, a city badly affected by the fighting, to provide free bread for 35,000 people.

Three people collect relief supplies including buckets for clean water from a Red Cross worker - many other supplies are laid out behind them

© ICRC/Islam Alaa

Another 2.3 million got clean water thanks to our teams who repaired damaged water points and provided water purification materials.

Our partner the Yemen Red Crescent Society has trained volunteers in the importance of health education to prevent diseases spread by dirty water.

The volunteers will then share this knowledge with their communities.

Red Cross medical staff check the leg of a man who has recently had surgery on it


Here, staff from the International Committee of the Red Cross care for a wounded patient.

An average of 75 people are killed or injured every day.

It is estimated that over 7,100 people have been killed in less than two years. More than 36,000 have been wounded, with some left permanently disabled.

Bombing and shortages of essential supplies mean that less than half of the medical facilities in Yemen are fully functioning.

But 52 hospitals and 35 other health facilities have benefitted from donations of medical and surgical supplies. We also helped with the cost of generating solar-powered electricity to keep them going.

A girl of about five years old looks at the camera as men collect relief supplies behind her

© ICRC/Iscander Al Mamari

While the situation is extremely challenging, the Red Cross and Red Crescent are still able to help.

Around 12,000 Yemen Red Crescent volunteers are working across the country providing direct services on the ground, health care to first aid.

Since May, around 20,000 people, including 5,000 mothers and babies, have received free health care at a free Red Crescent health centre in the northwest of the country.

Tragically, all other health services in that area were forced to close by the conflict.

You can help us do more by supporting the Yemen Crisis Appeal.