War and disasters

Hope in the midst of conflict

Learning to read and write seemed like a distant dream for Alawia, until it was not.

Updated 26 Jan 2022

Learning to read and write seemed like a distant dream for Alawia, until it was not.

Learning to read and write seemed like a distant dream for Alawia, until it was not.

Ongoing war in Yemen

The ongoing war in Yemen has led to widespread loss of life and has decimated public infrastructure. It has also shattered communities – people forced to flee the conflict have lost friends and family in the process of moving.

New communities are formed as internally displaced people seek shelter in new areas often without existing community bonds.

Vulnerable people, who have already suffered through years of conflict and trauma, are often left without the essential social support they need to recover and rebuild their lives, and communities are fragmented and weakened.

The Danish Refugee Council (DRC) and the ACTED-led consortium, funded by the European Union, are working together to promote resilience and social cohesion for vulnerable communities in Yemen. On 1 September 2021, DRC established a community centre in Al Anad, Tuban district, Lahj governorate. 

The centre provides a number of services including Awareness sessions, case management including Individual Protection Assistance, Psycho social support - PSS, none formal educational recreational activities. Along with the services, the centre provides a focal point for the community, allowing people from different communities to meet, socialise and form new bonds.

For those that have been displaced by conflict, the centre also offers a critical opportunity to build the support networks essential to rebuilding their lives after the trauma of conflict and displacement.

Learn to read and write

Learn to read and write

Alawia is 45 years old, a mother to six children and a grandmother to two. She began coming to the DRC community centre in October 2021. Alawia was informed about the centre and the activities provided through a local community member.

“Before joining the centre, I was not able to read or write. I have been coming to the centre – since it opened, and I can now write my name and read the alphabet” said Alawia excitedly.  Alawia was also invited to attend COVID-19 awareness sessions at the centre and start sewing classes. 

Alawia and ten of her close friends come to the community centre three days a week on foot to join the literacy classes. Thanks to the classes, she is beginning to learn to read and write, gaining not only a new skill, but new friendships too.

Alawia hopes that her daughter and sons will become doctors and teachers to give back to their community and country.

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