Our friend and advocate Gen Garth Collett writes from Yemen.


Sept 19

As debates continue about Afghanistan and the news is full of images of negativity, I thought I’d show you the real impact of teaching children about the hazards of war.

Here are some photos of a little village in Yemen, which relies upon an agricultural economy. Peaceful and good people live here. Hard to think there are mines, but there are.

There aren’t fancy classrooms or smart boards, but a furrow to sit on and a tall straw hat to keep you cool. You listen to some quite fantastic people deliver risk education. Thanks to them, these children and adults are being taught about hazards in a way that allows them to learn whilst having fun. The smiles on the faces of the children say it all. I’ve been really humbled to deliver this activity in areas that are often forgotten. And, I got a free hat – no wait a minute, there’s a price on it. Bugger, fleeced again but another fabulous memory!


Sept 15

Been a bit of a quiet time in Aden this time around, but a few points of note. On the anniversary of 9/11 the Port of Mocha was hit with three ballistic missiles, there is currently a wave of protest across Aden and Hadramawt governorates condemning the deterioration of basic services, 15 people were injured/killed in a single mine strike, and schools are suspended to protect students and staff. The Yemeni Rial is at an all-time low, with the obvious impact on food insecurity.

As a result, our activities are somewhat curtailed and the people of Yemen continue to suffer from the conflict. A group of eminent experts has pointed out that if countries continue to sell weapons to the warring parties then the situation will endure. Our country (the U.K.) is a huge party to that problem, reducing international funding to Yemen whilst raking in profit from arms sales. Sleep well Boris.