Life can change for millions of families in an instant: natural disasters take loved ones and the outbreak of war drives families from their homes. When the unthinkable happens, Mercy Corps delivers rapid, lifesaving aid to hard-hit communities and then teams up with them to build back stronger.
We have responded to almost every global natural disaster in the last 20 years, including the Nepal earthquake, Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, the Japan tsunami, the Haiti earthquake, the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa, and the Indian Ocean tsunami.
Our seasoned emergency responders work through conflict in Gaza and are on the ground in Ukraine, Iraq, South Sudan and the Central African Republic distributing critical supplies and protecting families uprooted by ongoing violence.
We're also working to support 3.7 million people affected by the crisis in Syria, a long-term refugee crisis and humanitarian disaster with no end in sight. Learn more about our ongoing response to the Syrian crisis ▸
All stories about Emergency response
Ethiopia: A mother's appeal
We’re outside the Mercy Corps office in Gashamo, Ethiopia – a bone-crunching nine hour drive from Jijiga, the regional capital. It’s early in the morning, and the noisy generator is cranking out its last few minutes of power before we shut it down for the day.
Ethiopia: Despite rains, drought is far from over
On the road halfway between Gashamo and Jijiga, we spent the night with a local family. As we sat and talked on the front stoop, the evening was pleasant, the full moon bright. Then in a matter of an hour or so, I watched the clouds roll in and the stars wink out.
Ethiopia: 'You gave my baby a second life'
When Istohil Sheik Ahmed Abdi brought her 9-month-old son Sahane to the Mercy Corps mobile clinic in her area, she hoped to learn why he was so weak. The baby cried constantly, was vomiting and refused to nurse. He had a high fever.
Ethiopia: When no tears come
There was already a crowd at the mobile health site when we arrived. The veranda was a colorful swirl of fabric. Most of the women had a bulge at their side, belly or back that turned out, when unwrapped, to be a baby.
Libya: Youth on the frontlines
Young people here in Libya are looking to promote positive change and have been significant in Mercy Corps' efforts.
Ethiopia: Bigger harvests, safer food
I’m writing from under my mosquito net in Jijiga, Ethiopia. If you don’t know where that is, don’t feel bad. I didn’t either. I looked it up before I left home, of course, but Google maps only showed a big empty expanse that I suppose is meant to indicate sand.
Kenya: Cash grant, food provide relief to family
I met Sangaba Abdi Gullet at Barmil during our cash distribution activities. She looked more distressed than the rest of the beneficiaries. From her face, we could tell she’d been through very tough times.
Kenya: Drought pushing food prices up
Here's an example of how prices have skyrocketed in Kenya because of the drought. The conversion rate is simple: 100 Kenyan shilling equals a dollar.
Kenya: 'Our camels are so weak, we have to help them stand up'
Chief Saladi Ibrahim shakes my hand and manages a smile. As we sit down in the hut, he pauses to gather his thoughts. He is clearly troubled. He’s been chief for 17 years, and his village of Dela, like the rest of Wajir County, is in a terrible time.
Kenya: Pressing for time
All day long, as the heat swelled to a punishing bake, gray clouds teased a promise of rain. But no rain came. In Wajir town and the surrounding scrub the landscape is parched: red sand, broken branches, piles of white rocks.