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Building back stronger

Haiti, January 9, 2013

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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Empowering youth: In Port-au-Prince's most impoverished neighborhoods and tent camps, we're focused on giving the youngest earthquake survivors the tools to create a better future. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Our Soccer for Life program uses the discipline of sport to teach young people healthy life skills and HIV prevention. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Coaches are valuable role models and advocates for children who often struggle to get to school and stay safe in risky neighborhoods. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Miguel Samper for Mercy Corps  </span>
    Soccer for Life builds on our expertise helping children recover after trauma. After the 2010 earthquake, our signature Comfort for Kids and Moving Forward programs supported 100,000 kids with art therapy, play groups and counseling. Photo: Miguel Samper for Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Emmanuella Fontin, 14 (right), lost her home in the earthquake and missed two years of school. Since she joined Soccer for Life last year her best friend, Michaela, she says she feels happy again. She studies harder in school now to achieve her dream of becoming a nurse. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Helping women thrive: As a kindergarten teacher, Henriette Bernard is focused on giving kids the best start. But as a small business owner, she has struggled to keep her school open since families moved away from her destroyed neighborhood. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Mercy Corps' program training women entrepreneurs is helping her find new ways to market her services and help her community. The 18-month competition connects over 600 women with tools and resources to grow their businesses. In the end, we'll award $65,000 to fund the plans of 22 finalists. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Henriette plans to start offering cooking, housekeeping and parenting classes to empower women in her neighborhood. "They always underestimate women in Haiti," she said. "But I believe that I have the conviction to keep going.” Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Insuring small business owners: Supporting entrepreneurs creates sustainable jobs that bolster Haiti's economy and help people lift themselves out of poverty. But small business owners face many risks in a country beset by natural disasters. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Living day-to-day, these informal entrepreneurs can lose their entire livelihood in an instant and have no way to bounce back. MiCRO, our affordable microinsurance program, protects Haiti's small business owners in the event of hurricanes, earthquakes or floods. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Courtesy of Fonkoze  </span>
    MiCRO proved critical in 2012, when Hurricanes Isaac and Sandy ravaged Haiti within two months of each other. Through our local microfinance partner Fonkoze, business owners received benefits to repair damaged homes and replace inventory so they didn't lose valuable income. Photo: Courtesy of Fonkoze
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Courtesy of Fonkoze  </span>
    Janette Chery sells coconuts out of her home in a rural village along the Dominican border. Hurricane Isaac's 60 MPH gusts ripped the roof off her house, a repair she could not afford to make. But MiCRO funds have helped her get back to business and support her family. Photo: Courtesy of Fonkoze
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Courtesy of Fonkoze  </span>
    Since MiCRO launched in June 2011, 40,000 women entrepreneurs like Janette (right) have received a total of $8.3 million to rebuild. Photo: Courtesy of Fonkoze
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Protecting the land: Widespread deforestation in Haiti makes the impact of these continued natural disasters even worse — especially for rural communities. Our pioneering Vie, Te & Eneji (Life, Land & Energy) project focuses on protecting natural resources while supporting Haiti's agricultural economy. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    We're training farmers to build rock walls and other natural barriers to prevent soil erosion. These efforts are already starting to show benefits, preventing crops from washing away and reducing the level of flooding during 2012's major storms. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    Communities are also planting trees — 130,000 so far — to enrich the land. Different varieties, including fruit trees, also provide a new source of income for farmers. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps
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  <span class="field-credit">
    Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps  </span>
    These efforts — including the introduction of solar lamps and fuel-efficient stoves — are not only promoting a better environment, but also bringing communities together with the resources to determine a future of their own design. Photo: Liz Hummer/Mercy Corps

In the aftermath of the devastating January 2010 earthquake in Haiti, our emergency response was imperative to helping families get back on their feet. Our teams reached more than one million people with emergency aid, financial resources and emotional support.

Three years later, we're investing in Haiti for the long-term. Through programs that empower young people, support entrepreneurs, and protect valuable natural resources, Haitians are finding new reasons to hope and new ways to build back even stronger communities.