How One Woman Became a Humanitarian Logistician in Yemen
Women are playing a key role as frontline responders in disasters and conflicts everyday.
Every day humanitarian logisticians are responsible for overseeing safe passage of humanitarian cargo. If shipments are delayed or do not reach their destination, millions of people’s lives are on the line.
For instance, 20 million people are facing food insecurity in Yemen, where many ports of entry have been closed due to the ongoing conflict, and blockades can make resource distribution difficult to impossible. Despite this, logisticians working in Yemen must house and distribute huge shipments of humanitarian cargo arriving daily. To further complicate matters, much of the cargo requires special accommodation, such as temperature-controlled facilities that store vaccines and medicines.
Undertaking these tasks is a cadre of highly trained professionals, such as Farah Altarifi, an Engineer with a background in Logistics, who has worked as a Logistics Manager for organizations in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Yemen.
In the past, a man would have more than likely held the position that Farah does now. Increasingly, women are actively taking over highly skilled roles in traditionally male professions. Yet, due to their gender, women face many added challenges to a job that already comes with enormous pressure.