As young people mature, the decisions they make have an enormous impact on their families, their communities and our world. But growing up surrounded by poverty, war or in the aftermath of disaster increases their risks and limits their choices.
That's why giving children and youth the right support at this most critical time is essential to building tomorrow’s strong, productive communities.
When disaster strikes, young children are especially vulnerable to developing emotional and social problems that can jeopardize their futures. Mercy Corps worked with experts to design our signature Comfort for Kids program that helps children process their trauma and recover through play, sports and art activities. See our expert's recommendations for how parents and caregivers can help children through times of crisis ▸
For adolescents faced with violence, early marriage and interruptions to schooling, we provide opportunities for community involvement, vocational training and life skills development. Our goal is to empower youth in the toughest places to make smart life choices and invest their energy in developing solutions to their countries’ biggest challenges.
All stories about Children & Youth
Zimbabwe: Changing the lives of HIV/AIDS-orphaned children
Across Zimbabwe, 1.5 million children have been affected by HIV/AIDS, with many losing one or both parents to the virus. The majority of these orphaned and vulnerable children — even if taken in by compassionate relatives — struggle to have enough food to eat and to afford school fees.
Indonesia: Normally I don’t like children. But today I had no choice!
As most of my colleagues will tell you, generally I’m not keen on kids. But today, celebrating Global Handwashing Day with more than 1,500 mothers and children in West Jakarta, I had to get over that pretty quickly.
Tajikistan: Dress for success
Sitting in a room with four other girls, Gulshan Chorieva holds up a dress that she and the other sewing students have been working on under guidance of the master seamstress.
Haiti: Peace Day in Haiti
For the past few years, Mercy Corps has been taking part in a campaign to raise awareness of the United Nations International Day of Peace, September 21, through sports activities.
Tajikistan: Through a Caring Lens
Ethiopia: Images: Helping Ethiopia's daughters stay in school
Ethiopia: Partnering with Angelique Kidjo to help Ethiopian girls stay in school
Starting today, there will be more educational opportunities for young women in some of southern Ethiopia's poorest villages.
Ethiopia: Helping Ethiopia’s daughters stay in school
“These days, I can barely sleep because I am so excited with ideas on what to do next," says 38-year-old Felekech Endiris says with a smile. "I’m doing a bigger business. My family has enough to eat and I can afford medicines for my children now.”
DR Congo: A day of peace in Congo
Around the world, people took a moment to celebrate the International Day of Peace. The Mercy Corps team in Nyanzale, Democratic Republic of the Congo took time to celebrate the call for ceasefire and non-violence with the communities from displacement camps and Nyanzale town.
Indonesia: Smiles from Padang's orphans
September 8, 2010 was the last day of working in Mercy Corps West Sumatra before the office closed for the Eid al Fitri, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadhan. I joined the Urban Team in distributing supplies to the orphanages in and around the city of Padang.