As young people mature, the decisions they make have an enormous impact on their families, their communities and our world. But growing up surrounded by poverty, war or in the aftermath of disaster increases their risks and limits their choices.
That's why giving children and youth the right support at this most critical time is essential to building tomorrow’s strong, productive communities.
When disaster strikes, young children are especially vulnerable to developing emotional and social problems that can jeopardize their futures. Mercy Corps worked with experts to design our signature Comfort for Kids program that helps children process their trauma and recover through play, sports and art activities. See our expert's recommendations for how parents and caregivers can help children through times of crisis ▸
For adolescents faced with violence, early marriage and interruptions to schooling, we provide opportunities for community involvement, vocational training and life skills development. Our goal is to empower youth in the toughest places to make smart life choices and invest their energy in developing solutions to their countries’ biggest challenges.
All stories about Children & Youth
Indonesia: Mothers supporting mothers
When my first daughter was born, none of my closest friends had children and I was living far from my mother and grandmothers. I felt alone with my questions and concerns about sleep, diapers and breast feeding so I joined a local mother’s group.
South Sudan: Mayol: the 15-Year-old entrepreneur
Mayol Dau is 15 years old and is an entrepreneur in Aweng, Twic County. Twic County is a remote area of South Sudan that has no paved roads and very little infrastructure, but that has not slowed down the business instincts of this teenage boy.
Somalia: Youth voices in a troubled land
In the northern Somalia semi-desert regions of Somaliland and Puntland, clans fight fiercely over dwindling supplies of wood, water and grazing land. The fewer the resources, the greater the competition. It’s an age-old conflict that jeopardizes the country’s future, especially its youth.
Internships build hope for Kosovan youth
For 20-year-old Albana Konjuhi from Kosovo, interning paved the way to success in the future job market.
Libya: 'Our children need help to deal with this'
As we pulled out of the Benghazi port into the clear, blue waters of the Mediterranean, it seemed more like we were on Greek island cruise than an International Organization for Migration (IOM) boat headed for the city of Misrata, Libya.
Japan: 90-day report from Japan
Japan: All the colors of helping survivors
Fumie Sugawara sits on the blue tarpaulin that's spread across the floor the gymnasium. A bright yellow truck and other vibrant toys are gathered around her. Fumie engages two young girls in an imaginative game using a dozen different shades of Play-Doh.
Japan: VIDEO: Comfort for Kids activities in Kesennuma, Japan
Tajikistan: Expectant mothers helped by Mercy Corps' Maternal and Child Health program
Expectant mothers and mothers-in-law at a focus group discussion in Gonchi district, Tajikistan
Tajikistan: Back in Tajik land
I’m back in Tajikistan, six months after my first visit. This time, I’m here to support our field team with the midterm evaluation being conducted for our Maternal and Child Health program. Accompanying me is Donna Sillan, a consultant we have contracted to write the evaluation.