Mercy Corps has been working in Niger since 2005. Niger is one of the world's poorest countries, with an annual per person income of less than $200. Over the past ten years, the country has experienced significant social and political instability that has left millions unable to adequately respond to chronic drought and malnutrition.
Additionally, climate change has led to increasingly erratic rain patterns, which severely affect farmers’ ability to grow enough food. A failed harvest at the end of 2011 left the entire Sahel region of West Africa in the grip of a dire, ongoing food crisis that continues today. Get the quick facts about the crisis in the Lake Chad region ▸
According to the UN, 340,000 people living in Niger are severely food insecure. Get the quick facts about hunger ▸
- Agriculture & Food: Providing emergency food vouchers and commodities to those who need it most, while simultaneously building long-term food resilience by providing improved seeds, goats, farming tools, technical trainings, and teaching pregnant and nursing mothers about nutrition
- Conflict & governance: Working with local governments to prevent and mitigate disputes and ensure proper management of natural resources, developing a new system for tracking the factors that influence vulnerability to violent extremism
- Disaster preparedness: Training communities to assess and identify natural disaster risks and encouraging land rehabilitation to minimize erosion and prevent flooding
- Economic opportunity: Strengthening farmers’ economic opportunities by linking them with better opportunities to sell their products, connecting pastoralists to veterinary services to keep livestock healthy and fostering employment for young people
- Women & gender: Involving women in community decision-making, educating community leaders about the importance of gender equality and creating safe spaces and schools for young girls to express themselves and continue their education
All stories about Niger
Niger: Life of a girl: Spend the day with Badariya
What's it like to be a 13-year-old girl in West Africa? Badariya doesn't get to spend her day in a classroom, but she's still determined to change her future. Follow a day in her life and see how.
Mali, Niger, Nigeria: Why women are key to building resilience
Increasingly frequent droughts are the new reality in the Sahel. Our new research shows how gender equality helps communities survive these and other disasters.
Niger: Meet our field staff: Hadjia
In one of the poorest countries in the world, Mercy Corps works to help families grow more food and to empower young women and girls to become stronger voices in their communities. Learn how Hadjia Aissatou helps us make an impact.
Niger: Santou's story
Recurring droughts in West Africa make it difficult for Santou to grow enough food to feed her family. Find out how a pair of goats has changed her life.
Niger: Food crisis looming: Hawa's fight against hunger
Severe food shortages caused by recurring drought are again threatening millions of people in West Africa.
Niger: Meet our field staff: Ibro
After leaving a job in radio journalism, Ibro is turning the message of resilience into reality for drought-stricken communities in Niger.
Niger: A goat for Santou
Feeding six children has not been easy for Santou — especially as a hunger crisis took hold of Niger and the entire Sahel region of West Africa this year.
Niger: Women farming more food
In the Djolley Fandou village in the drought-stricken Tillaberi region of Niger, women are in charge of the farming; most of the men left early on during the hunger crisis to find work in the city.
Niger: One more meal
At the second of three cash distributions in Niger, Mercy Corps staff heard that families have been able to eat one additional meal every day thanks to the support.
Mali, Niger: What you want to know about the Sahel hunger crisis
The hunger crisis in the Sahel is not an immediate emergency that gets splashed across the evening news. Instead, the tragic circumstances of drought and failed harvests have been building since the beginning of the year.