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Yemen: Poor families get cash to buy food

Cash from the post office

WFP works with the Yemen Post Office so that poor families can collect their cash at their local branch. This is the same distribution network that the government uses for its Social Welfare Fund.

Yemeni men wait for cash in Hajjah post office

These men are queueing up at the post office in Hajjah, in northwest Yemen. With the money they receive, they can go and buy food in the local market. Without the cash assistance this would be difficult as prices are very high at the moment.

Yemen man shows ID

A local man shows his ID card and the WFP card entitling him to the cash for food.

Yemen: women vulnerable in hunger crisis

Yemen is slipping into hunger with 5 million people – almost one-quarter of the population – going hungry and requiring external food assistance. Pregnant women and nursing mothers and especially at risk because of the extra nutrition they need.

Recording the disbursement online

A female employee at the Hajjah Post Office checks ID and the WFP ration card and inserts the data into a computer database, making sure the disbursements are carefully tracked. 

Regular food distribution

The cash distributions being run by WFP fit alongside traditional food distributions at which families receive a basket of items including flour, wheat and pulses. WFP is scaling up its programmes to provide food assistance to 3.6 million people, working with partners, donors and the government.

Yemeni man at WFP food distribution

In addition to the 5 million people who are already going hungry and require assistance, an additional five million people have an inadequate diet and are at risk of falling into severe hunger amid rising food and fuel prices and insecurity.

WFP in Yemen began giving cash to the poorest families in the Hajjah and Ibb governorates in late 2011, reaching around 70,000 people in total (10,000 households). Family heads collecting their vouchers at their local post office. These photos show the third round of cash distribution in the governorate of Hajjah.