They say, the experience that a person acquires is actually the mistakes that have accumulated over the years, from which we derive our correct decisions. Indeed, this is what has been applied in this mission, which was considered one of the largest missions carried out by the World Food Organization in Yemen. This time, we must think carefully before taking any step, and this thinking must be on three dimensions, which are the air, sea, and land dimensions. All of them must be taken into account at the same time.
What I mean here is carrying out the biggest challenge we have ever done at YPN until this moment. WFP seeks to deliver food to more than 12 million people, and this is something that the world must know about, and our role lies in documenting these efforts from the beginning to the end through sea, air and land.
Our teams were located in the North and the South of Yemen, and these teams are a group of professional film makers and photographers who were oriented in details and fully prepared to carry out this task. Usually, the first challenge lies in obtaining the necessary permits to do the filming and obtaining them before starting the task, but the matter is different here. Ships arrive by sea, offload their contents, and transport them via trucks to huge warehouses and then transporting everything to various distribution points. Different events with different timelines from the North to the South which requires dealing with different authorities. Yemen is a conflict zone and explaining what happens requires really long blog which is something that I can’t write because I’m still trying to understand the events till this moment.
Coming back to our topic. You may have a ready-made plan, but the implementation of it in Yemen is full of surprises; and going things very smoothly without any obstacles is considered a miracle. One of the challenges that we were facing was following the trucks which were fully loaded with support, traveling long distances from one governorate to another, passing through the checkpoints that were doing their job but at the same time they were delaying us chasing the trucks. Fortunately, the trucks were traveling at a moderate speed the whole time to ensure safety and were always in the lens of our cameras.
Patience and anticipation of surprises were our weapon. This journey was full of tough roads and filming using drones was a lifesaving option most the time. Yes, we had to sleep in remote areas and stay there for days in order to document the moments when the beneficiaries and their families arrives at the distribution points.
What has been mentioned become something that happened in the past and we soon forget the pain and the difficult moments when we see the joy of families receiving support. Yes, it is a joy we wish for each person, but what we really want is a lasting joy that will only be achieved through peace. WFP and many other humanitarian agencies in Yemen are doing really great efforts but peace only will preserve the dignity of every human being and enable us to be stable to build what has been destroyed and gaining what has been lost…
Read more about WFP food journey in Yemen : LINK