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
Haiti: The long road to recovery December 29, 2010
The Jan. 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti decimated the capital city of Port-au-Prince, killing more than 230,000 people. It was a tragic blow to a country where 55 percent of the population already lived below the poverty line of $1 a day.
Sudan: Out of destruction, rebuilding hope in Abyei December 28, 2010
It has been just over two and a half years since clashes between the northern Sudan Armed Forces and the southern Sudan People’s Liberation Army burned Abyei town to the ground.
Haiti: Mobile money in Haiti December 27, 2010
Around 6:30 on Friday morning, I left Port-au-Prince with Nick Kristof, Sheryl WuDunn and their two teenage kids to Saint Marc, a seaside city about a two and a half hour drive north of the capital, to check out Mercy Corps' use of mobile phones to deliver assistance to earthquake-affected famili
Indonesia: Bringing healthy street food to Tegal Alur December 27, 2010
“Hi friends! Come to My Child's Café… choose and get various healthy snacks here,” said a catchy jingle that played during over the grand opening of My Child Café and its healthy kitchen in West Jakarta's impoverished Tegal Alur neighborhood.
Central African Republic: Hadja becomes an entrepreneur December 20, 2010
Hadja had never engaged in commerce, and had never had an opportunity to generate her own income — until she joined the Mercy Corps Village Savings and Loan Association.
Find a mentor. Be a mentor. Build a business. December 18, 2010
Business mentoring isn’t a new concept for many professionals — but the way these connections are happening is changing faster than ever. Breaking out of the mentoring program mold is the Mercy Corps program MicroMentor, best described as a Match.com for business mentoring.
Zimbabwe: Beauty Jokonya with crop December 15, 2010
Beauty Jokonya, a local farmer in Zimbabwe's Murehwa district, with bounty from her crop field — which, with help from Mercy Corps, she and her husband irrigate with a treadle pump.
Zimbabwe: Better living through treadle pumps December 15, 2010
One of the greatest challenges that smallholder farmers face in Zimbabwe is how to irrigate bigger plots and get higher returns from their pieces of land.
Haiti: Celebrating the launch of mobile money in Haiti December 10, 2010
Mercy Corps was recognized on Monday in a ceremony to announce the launch of T-cash, the Haitian mobile money service from telecom operator Voilà and Haitian bank Unibank.
Niger: Missed opportunities December 10, 2010
In Niger, although women represent more than half of the population, they are victims of all kinds of discrimination. Despite their best efforts they mostly remain poor.