Afghanistan is one of the world's toughest places to be a woman. Conflict and cultural repression have denied them education, careers, safety and equal rights. But less than a year after opening our' INVEST vocational training center to women in Helmand province, more than 900 have enrolled to learn English, computers, sewing, embroidery and calligraphy. These exciting new programs by Mercy Corps are empowering women to join the workforce alongside men, and will help them teach future generations about women's rights. Creating equal employment opportunities for women would add up to $80 billion to Asia's economy every year.
Click here to watch this uplifting video to hear personal accounts from Afghan women as they share their experiences regarding the new training and education opportunities.
Some women are older, illiterate widows who were begging on the street before finding the classes; others, like Shamsiya, are younger and from families who have encouraged their education. All still face threats and uncertainty, but bravely move forward to seize every opportunity they can — and work toward a better future for women in Afghanistan.
Thank you for your support to enable these women to have better lives.
On the tea estates in northeastern India, generations of girls and women have grown up without learning how to read — they spend their days in the field, just as their parents did, and there is no access or time to attend school.
Mercy Corps developed the Women Empowerment through Literacy (WEL) program to reach more than 3,000 illiterate women in Assam who expressed a desire to learn how to read and write in order to better their lives and communities. Once given the opportunity to go to class, their enthusiasm for learning is undeniable.
When I was in Assam visiting with women in our literacy programs, I heard the same sentiment over and over again: the women want to learn more now. Some want to learn English or develop their abilities in their native Assamese — but mostly they have gained confidence in their ability to learn, and they want to learn whatever they can.
After years of providing a thumbprint signature, women can sign their name to receive their paycheck. After a lifetime of not knowing if shop keepers at the market were giving them the correct change, they are now financially literate. They are now recognized by as being educated — and are helping their children succeed in school so they never have to know the struggles of illiteracy.
Investing in women is a sure bet. Research shows it leads to healthier children, larger harvests, more vibrant economies and more peaceful communities.
From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, Mercy Corps helps girls and women realize their incredible potential to change the world. Learn how we fight for equal rights to education, healthcare, jobs and justice.
Mercy Corps programs are focused on recovery for hard-hit families and children. We thank you for your ongoing support.
This past year, the incredible compassion and generosity of our supporters improved the lives of so many people who faced unimaginable hardship.
Because of you, Mercy Corps provided medicine and food to children in Ethiopia weakened by drought.
Our supporters like you restored jobs to fishermen in Japan who lost everything to the massive tsunami.
Together, we gave hope to parents in the world's toughest places who struggle against all odds to build a better life for their children.
Nimo, a 25-year-old mother in Kenya, didn't have enough drinking water for her family during the region’s worst drought in 60 years. But our teams trucked in tankloads of water to Nimo's village, part of our lifesaving assistance to more than 1 million people throughout the region.
Thirteen-year-old Herma lived through the catastrophic earthquake in Haiti that killed 150,000 people nearly two years ago. Every week she participates in our Moving Forward program, which uses sports to teach kids the team-building and communication skills they need to feel empowered and secure in their lives. Our youth programs in Haiti have reached more than 90,000 children.
Japan's massive tsunami in March killed 22,000 people and decimated the fishing industry along the northeast coast. In the coastal town of Minamisanriku, we reequipped salmon fish hatcheries and seaweed-processing facilities as part of our region-wide efforts to save the jobs of fisherman like Isami Hoshi.
These are just three of the lives we've changed this past year with the generosity of people like you. On behalf of the millions of people we serve, thank you for helping restore hope and opportunity. We look forward to sharing with you the lives we'll change together in 2012.
Dan O'Neill Founder
Mercy Corps continues to help people build secure, productive and just communities in some of the toughest places on earth. We are responding to historic draught in the Horn of Africa, helping people in Haiti and Japan recover from the devastating effects of earthquakes and a tsunami, and empowering people in Afghanistan to earn a sustainable living. These projects, and others like them, wouldn't be possible without your donations. Thank you.As the holiday season approaches we would like to encourage you to continue supporting our efforts around the world by making a donation to Mercy Corps on behalf of a loved one. Make a donation in honor of someone special and get them a gift they will never forget.
Through GlobalGiving, it’s easy to make this meaningful gift. Just select the ‘gift in honor of’ tab under the orange ‘donate’ button on the left side of the donation page. Choose how you want the recipient of your gift to know that a donation has been made in their honor. Designate the amount you would like to give and hit the ‘donate’ button. Then customize the card as you’d like! Also don’t forget to redeem any Global Giving Gift Cards that you may have received this year. Mercy Corps has many important projects that we could use your help with.And, if you make a donation of $50 or more before the end of the year, we would love to thank you by sending our beautiful 2012 Mercy Corps Calendar. Just forward your email receipt with your mailing address to email@example.com.However you choose to give to Mercy Corps this year, know that your gift will help people living in some of the toughest places in the world lead more productive, safe, and healthy lives.From all of us here at Mercy Corps, thank you and Happy Holidays!
With Thanksgiving fast approaching, I want to thank you for your generous support of Mercy Corps' mission of alleviating suffering, poverty and oppression in some of the toughest places in the world.Your donations embody the spirit of this holiday season and serve as great reminders for all of us to be thankful for what we have and to be generous to those less fortunate.
Your donations are are so important to what we do. Please watch and share this video of me expressing my appreciation.
Our lifesaving work is not possible without you. Please accept my thanks on behalf of our worldwide team and the millions of people we serve around the world.
I hope that you and your family have a Happy Thanksgiving and a truly special Holiday Season.
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