Water is the source of life — but when not properly managed, it can breed disease, create conflict and destroy communities. Around the world, one in nine people does not have access to the clean water they need — that's nearly 800 million people.
Mercy Corps works to increase access to safe water around the world, whether it's bringing relief during droughts or rebuilding wells in remote villages. Our large-scale water infrastructure projects in Jordan and the Democratic Republic of Congo are forging new delivery routes, reducing waste, and bringing clean water directly to 1.25 million people — and counting — who are affected by conflict in those areas.
To complement our water access programs, we also improve sanitation and help people learn proper hygiene to prevent disease; work with families and farmers to implement conservation techniques; and strengthen communities against flooding.
Jordan, Syria: Zaatari refugee camp rapidly expands
Less than six miles from the Syrian border, the Zaatari camp opened just a month ago and is already home to more than 20,000 refugees. The most pressing need in the camp is water.
Jordan, Syria: Securing clean water for Syrian refugees
Mugar Dumitrache, Mercy Corps' emergency water and sanitation expert, recently arrived in Jordan to assess the situation in the rapidly expanding Zaatari refugee camp, now home to more than 15,000 people.
Somalia: Water provides new freedom for displaced women
“Not only do we now have clean water to drink and cook with, we actually have more time to take care of our kids and perform other household chores,” says Dofo.
Yemen: A witness to distress in beautiful land
Since Mercy Corps began working in Yemen in October 2010, we have kept our main office in the capital city of Sana’a. I see more and more women and young girls begging for food on the streets. Last month, nearly 100 soldiers were killed here by a suicide bomb.
Yemen: Relief and development in the slums of the forgotten
Called akhdam, “the servants,” by their fellow countrymen — and muhamashyn, “the marginalised,” by organizations working to help them — Yemen’s outcasts stand outside of the nation’s already tumultuous social, economic and political life.
Jordan: Loans help families make the most of scarce water
It is predicted that by 2025, Jordan will have completely drained its water resources. Farmers will not be able to grow crops, families will not have enough water to drink, cook or wash with.
Japan: Water partner Xylem recognized for its innovative support
When it comes to many of our biggest initiatives, which can span multiple countries, Mercy Corps partners with companies that want to make a difference. Their funding, and many times their technical expertise, allow us to bring some big changes to people’s lives around the world.
Niger: Maintaining wells as drought takes its toll
In Niger, cycles of drought and hunger are a harsh reality. Here, a family works on a well that Mercy Corps helped them rebuild.
Colombia: Trekking to see flood recovery efforts
I just returned from a trip to Colombia where, instead of sitting behind a computer, I sat in planes, taxis, boats, vans, dugout canoes and on horseback — in one day.
Ethiopia: Rebuilding a community water source
Emergency response program manager Kaja Wislinska speaks to community members who are repairing a pond too damaged to hold water. It is now a working water source for the 400 households in Ada Olaa village.