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
Pakistan: Helping kids cope
Life has been anything but normal for Salman since early May. That's when the fifth grader and his family fled their home in Mingora, Pakistan, to escape the fighting between Pakistan's army and Taliban militants.
Colombia: Tools for life
As I stand over a particularly energetic fifth grade boy to keep him from kicking the girl next to him, I’m amazed: they’re actually quiet. And still — for the most part. These five minutes of stillness could be the most important gift that these kids have received all week.
Colombia: Building children's confidence through sport
I am a Material Aid Officer with Mercy Corps – which means I work with massive (truckload sized-quantities) donations of product. The donated materials my team works with run the gamut: from computers to textbooks to sports equipment to pharmaceuticals.
Uganda: New beginnings
Pakistan: Staff pitch in to help more kids in Pakistan
Kosovo: Creating opportunities for Kosovo's youth
Kosovo is the youngest country in Europe, both in terms of its statehood and its demographics. Half of the country’s population is under the age of 25, and many of these young people depart for work abroad or are supported by relatives.
Pakistan: Helping kids displaced in Pakistan
Mercy Corps has begun providing sports and social activities to 1,200 displaced school-age children in Pakistan.
Indonesia: Eat your tempeh, kids
China: Christine: There for Sichuan's Survivors
China: Healing the Future
So much depends on children. They're the pride and joy of their families, as well as eternal hope for a better future. There's perhaps no place in the world where this rings more true than China.