Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities. Mercy Corps helps people survive, recover and become self-sufficient. We partner with the people we serve to help them recover from disasters and conflicts, secure peace, grow more food, improve health, educate and protect children, empower women and start businesses that improve the standard of living for families and communities.
Oct 14, 2011

Tatie's Home, a bakery in Port-au-Prince

Photo: Jinell Smithmyer/MicroMentor
Photo: Jinell Smithmyer/MicroMentor
Tatie grew up in a family of seven children, and wanted to own her own business since she was a little girl. While just a young student, Tatie's mother passed away and Tatie began raising her younger brother and god-daughter. She made them fried fritters to take to school for lunch, which were so delicious that they would sell them straight out of their lunchboxes. Seeing the potential in her culinary talents, Tatie began slowly building Tatie's Home, her bakery and catering business. After a number of years as a small, informal enterprise, Tatie's Home began to expand and land larger customers.
Then the January 12 earthquake hit, and everything changed.
The building that housed Tatie's bakery collapsed during the earthquake, forcing her to eventually open in a new location across town. Soon after opening in the new building, Tatie attended a business training class from Zafen, a program that provides training, financing, and individualized assistance to small and medium businesses throughout Haiti supported by Mercy Corps and Western Union Foundation. Her business has thrived since — the new bakery is in a central location for delivering her goods to markets and customers, she has increased her weekly flour order from one to 15 canisters, and she now employs seven people. Many of Tatie's employees are young and ambitious so, among other perks, she offers a flexible work schedule to enable them to attend school.
Because of donors like you, this loan will allow Tatie to purchase a new oven and increase her production of baked goods such ascoquignolbonbon siwo, wheat cookies and her signature product, the petit pain sec. This increased productivity will allow her to meet the demand of her customers, and increase her revenues and profits. When asked what advice she would give to other entrepreneurs in Haiti and around the world, Tatie says: “Keep the faith and know that you have to work hard. Pick something that you really love.”
Entrepreneurs like Tatie are searching for business mentors. Through MicroMentor, an initiative of Mercy Corps, we are able to provide her with experienced mentors. Because mentoring takes place over email, phone and Skype, if you are interested, you can volunteer from anywhere. Learn more at www.micromentor.org/haiti.
Thank you for your continued support, your donations help make projects like this possible. 
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To support more projects like this, we recommend that you donate on October 19th. Here is why:
Starting at 12:01 am EDT on October 19th/9:01 pm PDT on October 18th, GlobalGiving is matching all donations at 30% up to $1,000 per donor per projectGlobalGiving has $100,000 available in matching funds. Matching will last until funds run out or 11:59 pm EDT/ 8:59 pm PDT (whichever comes first). Get your donation in early, as funds are known to run out.
Donations made on www.globalgiving.co.uk or any GlobalGiving corporate sites (including Nike, Global Action Atlas, etc) are NOT eligible for matching. But often gifts made through the corporate sites are matched by the employer, so don’t feel left out – you can still donate!
 
Feel free to support this or other Mercy Corps projects, including:
Photo: Jinell Smithmyer/MicroMentor
Photo: Jinell Smithmyer/MicroMentor

Links:

Oct 13, 2011

Japan: More than Six Months Later

Photo: Mao Sato/Peace Winds Japan
Photo: Mao Sato/Peace Winds Japan

More than six months since the massive quake struck Japan, Mercy Corps, with help from Peace Winds, continues to bring relief to people in need while also continuing efforts that include economic recovery and trauma support. Our projects because of your donations have helped 148,000 people who live in the four towns where we are working: Ofunato, Rikuzentakata, Kesennuma and Minamisanriku.

We are helping families that our moving out of shelters into temporary housing provided by the Japanese government by providing bedding and kitchen items. Watch a video of Mercy Corp distributing supplies hereWe have also helped more than 6,000 survivors by distributing vouchers that they can use to purchase supplies they need from local merchants. And since transportation remains a challenge we are helping merchants bring their goods to customers via mobile shops and we are providing people access to stores by running a bus program.

We are also working with fishing associations and chambers of commerce to help vital industries recover. For example, we helped a fish market in Ofunato resume operations by providing much needed equipment like a scales, forklifts, and fish tanks. The market now sells many types of fish including bonito a high demand fish in Japan. We are also helping fishing associations in Minamisanriku purchase essential equipment to restart the production of wakame, a seaweed staple of the Japanese diet. The processing of the seaweed will create jobs for local women who traditionally do this work.   

Mercy Corps is also working to help children and adults deal with the emotional effects of the large disaster. Comfort for Kids is an innovative program that delivers training, books, and pamphlets to parents and teachers designed to help children recover from trauma. To see a copy of the Comfort for Kids workbook in Japanese click here.

Arts and Sports Caravan, a program led by a Japanese art therapist, helps Mercy Corps build and strengthen communities by providing children with fun, creative activities that allow them to express their feelings. It also gives parents an informal opportunity to talk over tea and cookies and speak with trained staff.

Moving Forward, a partnership with Peace Winds and Nike, uses sports to help young people recover physically and mentally from trauma that they have suffered. 

Thank you so much for your continued support, without it none of these projects would be possible.  

____________________________

To support more projects like this, we recommend that you donate on October 19th. Here is why:
Starting at 12:01 am EDT on October 19th/9:01 pm PDT on October 18th, GlobalGiving is matching all donations at 30% up to $1,000 per donor per projectGlobalGiving has $100,000 available in matching funds. Matching will last until funds run out or 11:59 pm EDT/ 8:59 pm PDT (whichever comes first). Get your donation in early, as funds are known to run out.
Donations made on www.globalgiving.co.uk or any GlobalGiving corporate sites (including Nike, Global Action Atlas, etc) are NOT eligible for matching. But often gifts made through the corporate sites are matched by the employer, so don’t feel left out – you can still donate!
Feel free to support this or other Mercy Corps projects, including:
Photo: Christopher Cabatbat/Mercy Corps
Photo: Christopher Cabatbat/Mercy Corps
Photo: Christopher Cabatbat/Mercy Corps
Photo: Christopher Cabatbat/Mercy Corps

Links:

Sep 15, 2011

Youth making a difference today: Annie's Toy Sale

Annie
Annie's note to Mercy Corps

I thought you might find this note as heartwarming as we did. Annie, from New York, held a toy sale and donated the proceeds to Mercy Corps' work in Somalia. Go Annie!! 

How inspiring to see kids in the U.S. doing what they can to help families suffering from drought and hunger in the Horn of Africa. Sadly, it's children under five years of age who are most at-risk for malnutrition and disease. According to the United Nations, 50% of youngsters arriving in some tent camps in Ethiopia are suffering from acute malnutrition. The good news is that with effective food aid and care from mobile clinics, children can recover quickly. 

Your gift means so much. Thanks to people like you and Annie, we're able to make a real impact. Though this crisis may not be in the headlines every day, you're urgently-needed donation enables us to continue our life-saving work. 

Links:

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