Fatima Al-beedh, The Country Office in Sanaa’, Yemen
November 30th, 2023
Wazerah’s life has been marked by unrelenting hardship. Born in the arid villages of Al-Lakmah and Al-Harja in Yemen, she and her friends never experienced a carefree childhood. Daily, they trudged through unforgiving terrain to secure a meager supply of water, a lifeline for their families.
Wazerah, a mere seven years old, should be in school, but instead, she’s driving a donkey to fetch water, a role thrust upon countless out-of-school children who face danger and fragility. They sacrificed their education to ensure their families’ survival along perilous routes known as the “routes of hell.”
I never had the opportunity to contemplate education. There was a brief moment when I walked past the school, envisioning myself as a student, just like others my age. However, the sound of the donkey’s braying quickly reminded me of the long queue I needed to join for water” Wazerah expressed.
These children, denied protection and education, bear the burden of water procurement, while the adults confront other challenges. However, amidst this tragedy, hope emerges. Vision Hope International e.V. in collaboration with The Building Foundation for Development organization (BFD), has launched the Improving Livelihoods and Strengthening Resilience for the Vulnerable Population project (LDCP).
This intervention promises to end the era where children were tasked with arduous water retrieval. Water will now flow into every home, thanks to an extended pipeline network. Wazerah, who once could not imagine attending school due to her water-fetching duties, is now a student in her first class.
The transformation is palpable in Al-Lakmah and Al-Harja villages. Children are resuming their education, basking in the safety of their homes. Families express gratitude for the intervention by BFD, a lifeline that has allowed them to thrive and flourish once more. Wazerah’s journey from despair to hope is a testament to the resilience of children in adversity.