Nothing is more basic to human well-being than having enough nutritious food to eat. Yet one in every eight people in the world — 842 million — are trapped in a cycle of hunger and poverty.
The reality is that most of the world doesn't have the benefit of picking up food from the corner store — they grow it themselves. Hunger is a crisis when disaster ruins the harvest. It is a cycle when families cannot grow or buy enough to lead healthy, productive lives, and when the effects of malnutrition are passed on to the next generation.
When food shortages occur due to drought and conflict, Mercy Corps helps prevent hunger and treat malnutrition in the most vulnerable — children, pregnant women, the elderly and the displaced. We distribute vouchers, cash or emergency rations, working with local suppliers to speed delivery, save money and boost local economies.
In addition to emergency responses, we focus on long-term solutions that build future food security.
Mercy Corps helps famers manage their land, increase their harvests and diversify crops to produce a larger, more nutritious, and stable food supply. By teaching nutrition and hygiene, we ensure families can utilize their resources to boost their health. And we connect farmers with new markets and introduce more efficient methods of tending productive livestock and processing and storing crops to increase incomes for years to come.
All stories about Agriculture & Food
Ethiopia: Standing her ground and springing back September 10, 2010
In many places around the world, drought withers lawns. In Ethiopia, drought withers lives. "When I was young, I was beautiful," says 50-year-old Zesino Mohamed Shiro. "But years of drought and not having enough to eat makes you old."
North Korea: Demystifying our work in North Korea August 20, 2010
In North Korea, Mercy Corps programs focus on alleviating hunger by expanding agricultural production. We also invite North Korean officials to the U.S. as part of building a humanitarian bridge between our country and theirs.
Afghanistan: Losing some preconceptions in Afghanistan August 19, 2010
I should know by now, but the important lessons are always worth repeating. Although blessed with the opportunity to travel often, I packed a lot of preconceptions when I set out for Afghanistan; this country that dominates our headlines but whose people we know so little.
Kosovo: Making the economy buzz August 9, 2010
Ali Rama is a 50-year-old beekeeper from the Vushtri Municipality in northern Kosovo. While Ali has enjoyed relative success in his honey production and sales for the last 10 years, he was looking to expand his business into new opportunities.
Kosovo: How a tractor changes everything August 9, 2010
The village of Videja is a rural community of 1,000 residents near the Dukagjini Valley, the heart of western Kosovo's agricultural lands.
Kosovo: Not small potatoes August 9, 2010
Naim Fejza is a veteran potato farmer in the small town of Mogila in southern Kosovo. For his entire adult life, he and his household — which includes his parents, wife and three children — have eked out a living on the small income from the sales of potatoes on their farm.
Uganda: In northern Uganda, hope springs eternal August 4, 2010
As the brutal twenty-year civil war in Uganda has unofficially ended, many non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have exited Pader — a district in the country’s northern Acholiland — which was for many years at the epicenter of atrocities committed by the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).
Indonesia: "Is it healthy food or not?" July 29, 2010
“Why, lately, has my child been commenting on the food that I cook, asking if is it healthy food or not?” was a mother's question. Yulaita, the principal of Aisyiyah Suka Ramai Kindergarten in Aceh recalls hearing the question — she's also been hearing similar question from her child.
Niger: Responding to Niger’s latest hunger crisis July 23, 2010
Five years ago, Mercy Corps responded to a catastrophic food crisis in Niger that put more than 3.5 million people at risk of malnutrition and starvation. Today, Niger is facing potentially worse food shortages — and Mercy Corps is again readying a lifesaving response.
Afghanistan: Greening Afghanistan July 20, 2010
I’m just going to say it — people think of Afghanistan as a pile of rocks. I see where the mental image comes from; photos on the news do seem to showcase the sand and rocks in their effort to capture the grittiness of soldiers at war. But I know an Afghanistan of a different color: green.