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
Liberia: On market day in Gio Town, farmers learn a new way to extract palm oil
Wednesday is market day in Gio Town, a small village in Liberia’s Grand Bassa County. By mid-morning the stalls are crowded with vendors and shoppers.
Liberia: A sweet business: Cocoa brings new hope to Liberian farmers
Liberia is a lush tropical rainforest, just the right climate to grow cocoa beans. And before the country’s two civil wars, it did just that.
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.
Liberia: Redefining success: My journey to Liberia
Glance down a deeply rutted Monrovia side street and you may see, at the end of the block, a glimpse of palm trees, sandy coastline and the rolling ocean. Blink, and you may briefly imagine you’re in Mexico or another beachy getaway.
Liberia: Changing her life with goats
Victoria Dannies, 33, is divorced, with three daughters and two sons. Thanks to the training she received in Mercy Corps’ Youth Education for Life Skills (YES) program, she’s able to take good care of herself and her children.
Liberia: Tiny and tough
Annie Garfree is 42, with five daughters and one son. She’s soft-spoken, with smart eyes and a steely determination.
Liberia: Dish racks lead to healthier children
Of the 12 children that 50-year-old Annie Dolo gave birth to, seven are living. The other five died of malaria and measles.
Haiti: Transforming Haiti's countryside
Haiti: Cash-for-work and planning for the future