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
Kosovo: Raisa's story
Raisa was not like the other children in the village. As other children played and ran around, Raisa was always sitting on the steps of her house alone or by the time she caught up to the others, they had run off somewhere else. Even eating was exhausting.
A Priceless Process
You have to drive 20 minutes to get there, and if you don't arrive at least 20 minutes before the game begins, you'll probably have to watch it standing. Unless you're the deputy mayor.
Georgia: One wish
In many ways Levan is like any 13-year-old boy in any country around the world. He is bright, inquisitive and has a passion for sports. "My wish is to become a soccer player, the best shooter on the national soccer team and to win the world championship," he says.
Afghanistan: Fighting Refugee Drug Abuse in Pakistan
Kyrgyzstan: Hard Work, Big Dreams
Gulumkan is an 8-year-old girl. She is the youngest in a family of eleven, including her older brother's wife and children. All of them live in a house that her father built three years ago. Before, they lived in a small earthen house that looked more like a shed than a house.
A Family's Hope for Good Health
Afghanistan: CHWs: A Foundation for Healthier Afghan Communities
Afghanistan: One Lucky Woman In Hazarjuft
Bakhtawar is sitting on a bed in the female in-patient ward of Hazarjuft Hospital in Helmand, Afghanistan. Her name means "lucky woman" but she has been anything but lucky when it comes to preganancy and health.
United States: Bringing Comfort To Kids One Year Later
NEW YORK, NY - In a Hunter College classroom on New York's Upper East Side a Mercy Corps Comfort For Kids Program training session begins.
Reaching the Farthest Child