Hussein Ibrahim lives with his family in a small cottage made of mud and covered with palm fronds in Hodeidah. It consists of three small rooms and one bathroom. Despite the modest conditions of the hut and the possibility of being easily destroyed and collapse with rains, the family happily decorated its walls with drawings.
Doa’a, one year old, is the youngest daughter of the family who suffers from severe acute malnutrition with complications. Her father, Hussein, says with tearful eyes, “When I looked at my daughter, I felt very sad and helpless. However, I did not give up. I had to borrow some money and took my daughter to the nearest health center, which is located an hour’s drive from my house. I was afraid that she might die on the way before we got there”. Hussein works in the profession of making palm rope beds, which are widely used in Hodeidah. However, the money he earns every day is not sufficient to meet his family’s food needs, as the money he earns is very little. During the pre-war period, the prices were relatively reasonable.
Little Doa’a arrived at the nutrition center with a very critical condition and suffering from severe malnutrition with complications including pneumonia and the inability to breastfeed. The nourishing center receives between 50-60 children and women suffering from severe acute malnutrition every month. Dr. Dhia, a physician in the center, explains the seriousness of Doa’a’s health condition and warns of the deteriorating health conditions in general and specifically the difficulty of maintaining the health of malnourished children. In the end, Doa’a returned to her home along with her father and mother. They were worried whether their little daughter Doa’a would survive or that she might die like the other children who die daily due to malnutrition.
“I wish with all my heart that the smile would be restored on the face of my little daughter, Doa’a” Hussein repeats disconsolately