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Our work in Yemen

In 2018, Sightsavers started working in Yemen to distribute treatments to protect against trachoma. More than 444,000 doses of antibiotics were given out during the first week-long distribution programme.

A child receives medicine in Yemen.

Yemen has been ravaged by years of civil war, leaving many people unable to access clean water or sanitation. These conditions have helped trachoma to thrive.

It’s thought that up to 1.4 million people in Yemen are at risk of contracting this blinding eye disease.

In 2018, with the help of our partners, we started work in Yemen to distribute the first antibiotics to protect people against trachoma. A team of more than 4,000 volunteers were trained to go door to door to give out the medication, and the majority of the volunteers were women: they were chosen because they are able to go into houses to treat other women and children, while men are often not admitted because of local customs.

More campaigns are now being planned in other districts in Yemen. There are more than 5,000 people with trichiasis, the advanced stage of the disease, who need surgery to save their sight.

At a glance

Total population
  • 27.5 million

  • What we focus on
  • Trachoma
  • Distributing medication
  • Protecting nearly half a million people in Yemen from trachoma is a huge achievement.
    Simon Bush, Sightsavers Director of NTDs
    Simon Bush.
    A group of women in Yemen are trained to distribute medication in the local community.

    How we’re fighting trachoma in Yemen

    We’re helping to train female volunteers so they can go door to door to distribute medication. This enables them to reach as many members of the community as possible, ensuring everyone receives the treatment they need.

    More about the programme

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