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
Dispatch from Hualpén, Chile
People are still living in tents 48 days after the earthquake in Chile. Fish is a source of income in Talcahuano, and many people lost their homes and they can’t go back to the sea for fishing. Boats are still in the main street — the tsunami destroyed their dreams.
"My Earthquake Story" — a story for everyone
Healing the helpers
The aftershocks continue night and day following Chile’s 8.8 earthquake on February 27, even though more than a month has passed. On Sunday night, a 4.8 tremor with an epicenter near Santiago set windows rattling and the overhead lamps swaying.
Indonesia: Kedai Balitaku provides employment
Mrs. Anik joined Kedai Balitaku Aceh — Mercy Corps' Child Nutrition Program that helps vendors sell healthy foods to children — in December 2009.
Indonesia: Helping the baby get better
My name is Muhammad Rizal. I’m working with Mercy Corps as the Marketing Officer for a nutrition program called Kedai Balitaku in Aceh Province, Indonesia.
Playing earthquake while the ground rumbles and tempers flare
The Educacion Popular en Salud (or EPES, Mercy Corps' local partner in Chile) Center here — with its wooden gazebo and jungle gym — is an oasis of respite from the surrounding catastrophe, two weeks after the earthquake and tsunami that devastated Concepción, Hualpén, Talcahuano and neighboring c
Haiti: 'Byenvenu a New York'
Haiti: Unleashing the Haitian enterprising spirit
On my recent trip to Haiti, I was filled first with despair and then hope. Despair for the overwhelming human and physical destruction. Hope because of the quiet strength, resilience, and determination of the Haitian people.
Haiti: The Next Steps to Haiti's Recovery
In the devastated but proud neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince, thousands of people have organized into local committees to help manage, guide and pitch in for what needs to be done in their communities. They are Mercy Corps' partners in the critical work of recovery and rebuilding.
Haiti: Video: Helping Haiti's children laugh, play and sing again
Today I visited a daycare where Mercy Corps' Comfort for Kids program is helping dozens of young earthquake survivors to celebrate their lives and friends again. Here's a video I took that shows just how amazing the spirit of these games and this music really is.