Markets, whether large or small, keep communities thriving. But conflicts, disasters and a lack of infrastructure can prevent people from conducting the daily transactions on which all growth and progress depend. Around the world, Mercy Corps discovers why commerce is stuck.
In some places, manufacturers need loans to purchase equipment and young people desire job skills. In others, key transportation routes to market must be rebuilt or farmers require better storage to keep their inventory fresh until sold.
Our economic development projects provide financing, equipment, training or technical support. These projects help people find jobs, build their businesses, supply their communities with the goods they need —and improve their lives.
All stories about Economic opportunity
Iraq: Reclaiming a place for Iraqi youth February 28, 2011
For many years, there was a very bad place in the middle of Kalar, Iraq. It had no name, but all kinds of malice and misfortune spread from it, spilling into the surrounding neighborhoods.
Haiti: A one-time grant can help save lives in Haiti February 15, 2011
In early January, Louis Jeune Dadyne had finally infiltrated a Mercy Corps Mobile Money event. She sat quietly in the back of the small, outdoor classroom, next to a particularly rambunctious prospective vendor.
Somalia: Stitching together her place in the market February 9, 2011
It was midday and the weather wasn’t favorable. The heat was scorching and everyone wanted to be in the shade.
Somalia: Encouraging local culture through peaceful change January 31, 2011
Iraq: Finding the story January 30, 2011
I work with Awatif in southern Iraq, but we had to travel across the country to get to know one another.
Nicaragua: Mentoring businesses in Nicaragua January 26, 2011
As MicroMentor's Central American partner, we are working to promote business mentoring in a society where entrepreneurs are facing tough economic, social, and environmental circumstances - often with little or no support.
Greetings from Davos, Switzerland January 25, 2011
In the past couple of weeks, I’ve traveled from Haiti to South Sudan to this Swiss mountain village where the World Economic Forum (WEF) holds its annual meeting on the state of the world’s economy.
Zimbabwe: Urban gardens nourish families and communities January 17, 2011
Until last year, 81-year-old Lucia Mbanje and her family of six, all residents of impoverished Sakubva township in Mutare, could not afford a balanced diet due to the prohibitive cost of vegetables in Zimbabwe as a result of the economic crisis.
Haiti: Interviews in the camps, a year later January 11, 2011
A few days ago, I went out to the Mojapta displacement camp, where Mercy Corps is providing clean water and sanitation to families, to ask earthquake survivors about their experiences today — and of the last year. Gilberte Jean, 23
Nicaragua: ¡Vivan los empresarios!: Mentoring entrepreneurs in Central America January 6, 2011
Starting with just a sewing machine, Aida Mayorga and Oscar Garcia built a business that now employs more than 50 workers and promotes positive environmental and social business practices.