Afghanistan

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  • Toni Greaves for Mercy Corps

Our strategy

Enable Afghans to improve their quality of life by helping them build sustainable, legitimate livelihoods.

The context

Mercy Corps has been working in Afghanistan since 1986. Decades of ongoing conflict, political instability, drought and economic chaos have left Afghanistan one of the world’s poorest and unstable nations. Eighty-five percent of the population relies on agriculture and natural resource-based livelihoods, leaving them vulnerable in a precarious economy.

Due to a worsening economy and a growing youth population, many people are unable to find suitable work. Currently, over 70% of the population is under the age of 30, and 400,000 young people reach working age yearly — there are not enough jobs available to meet their employment needs.

Climate change and challenges in managing natural resources have increased conflict in recent years. Approximately 75% of Afghans are at risk of their land becoming desert, particularly in rural areas.

Our work

  • Agricultural Development: Increasing farmers' production through training, infrastructure improvements and links to local and global markets.
  • Youth Programs: Providing young people with vocational training and support to start small businesses.
  • Environment: Addressing natural resource depletion by educating farmers and government officials about sustainable water management.
  • Renewable Energy Installing solar systems in community spaces to support economic growth and better access to social services, like schools and health clinics.
  • Women & Gender: Helping women learn job skills and start small businesses.

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