Mercy Corps

To alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities.
Aug 14, 2015

What do refugees need after leaving everything?

  • Syrian refugees in Jordan have few options to support themselves, making it difficult to purchase even the most basic necessities, like food. Mercy Corps distributes essential supplies to help vulnerable families meet their basic needs. All photos: Sumaya Agha for Mercy Corp

Syrian refugees in Jordan have few options to support themselves, making it difficult to purchase even the most basic necessities, like food. Mercy Corps distributes essential supplies to help vulnerable families meet their basic needs. All photos: Sumay Agha for Mercy Corps

 

 

Imagine fleeing your home with little more than the clothes on your back and what few items you can carry. You are running for your life — forced to leave your house, job, school, car, belongings and memories behind.

This is the reality for 4 million Syrians who have fled to neighboring countries for safety from the war that has ravaged their nation for more than four year

Once they cross the border — empty-handed and in a foreign land — how do they make due?

Below, learn about some of the essential items Mercy Corps provides to Syrian refugees living in host communities and camps in Jordan. The supplies help the most vulnerable refugee families survive and cope after losing so much.

It is illegal for Syrians to work in Jordan. Without livelihood opportunities, refugees struggle to purchase even the most basic necessities. We distribute food items like pasta, cooking oil and milk, to help them feed their families.

Cooking utensils and dishes help refugees prepare safe, nutritious meals. The tools also give Syrian families the opportunity to keep an important part of their culture alive — cooking and socializing around food.

Hygiene items like soap, toothpaste and razors are essential to helping refugees, who often live in crowded or makeshift shelters, stay clean and healthy.

Life doesn’t stop when someone becomes a refugee — people still have happy milestones like getting married or having a baby. We make sure parents have newborn supplies — bottles, blankets, diapers, formula — to care for the new addition to their family.

Children don’t stop growing, either. There is a constant need for clothing in refugee communities, especially for quickly growing youngsters.

Educational resources are limited for young Syrians in Jordan, and getting children into school can be challenging. When kids do get registered, school supplies like pencils, rulers, notebooks and backpacks are crucial to their ability to learn and succeed.

Stuffed animals are a small joy for children who have been uprooted from their homes, schools and friends — and forced to leave their toys behind.

Whether they're living in host communities or refugee camps, it's essential that refugee children have opportunities to grow, learn and continue their development. We providebooks for kids to read in the Child Friendly Spaces we maintain in Zaatari camp.

We also provide soccer shoes to children who play on the sports fields in Zaatari. Safe places to play, like the Child Friendly Spaces and the camp sports fields, help refugee children heal from trauma and feel a sense of normalcy.

This work is made possible thanks to support from UNICEF, UK Aid, and Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, as well as generous donors like you.

How you can Help:

Donate today. Every single contribution helps us provide even more support to Syrian families in desperate need of help.

Tell your friends. Share this story and spread the word about the millions of people who need us.

Stay informed. Read more stories about our work and those we are helping on Mercy Corps' Syria Crisis Response page. See link below.

Links:

Jul 31, 2015

Nepal Earthquake Response - 90 Days Later

Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps
Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps

Saraswati holds the money she received from Mercy Corps. Saraswati plans to use the cash to purchase supplies to build a temporary shelter for her family.

 

It has been three months since the devastating Nepal earthquake. Because of your generous support Mercy Corps has been able to reach over 68,000 people with essential items like food, clean water, shelter supplies and cash.

While we continue to work to meet some of the most immediate needs such as safe water, food support and shelter items, in the next several months we will increasingly shift our focus to longer-term recovery efforts.  Our ultimate goal is to build the resilience of affected communities and to connect people to the resources they need to rebuild even stronger than before the earthquake.

In the past six weeks Mercy Corps has distributed cash to 6,700 households, benefiting close to 34,000 people. In the next month we will reach an additional 19,000 households with cash. This cash assistance allows families to purchase the items that are most important to them — seeds and agricultural tools, food, school fees, building materials — while giving local economies the boost they need for long-term recovery.

What you are making possible is also reflected in these stories and photos.  

Saraswati, pictured above, lives in the Nuwakot district of Nepal with her ten-year-old daughter, her eleven-year-old son, and her husband. On April 25th they were sitting in their home when suddenly they felt the floor and walls shake. They managed to quickly escape, but their home was destroyed.

Saraswati and her family are not alone. Nuwakot is one of the regions that was hit hardest by the quake. Damage in these areas is massive — homes destroyed, livelihoods lost, economies stalled and entire villages leveled. That is why Mercy Corps is working in this district, and other hard hit areas, to get cash and much needed supplies into the hands of families.

Last week Saraswati traveled to Sunkhani to participate in a cash distribution led by Mercy Corps. She received a kit that included a solar lantern, hygiene, shelter, and kitchen supplies as well as the equivalent of $75 in cash. She told Mercy Corps that she planned to use the money to invest in supplies and tools to build a temporary home for her family.  

The following captions relate to the photos below:

(Top) To date Mercy Corps has distributed cash to 6,700 households. This unconditional cash assistance allows families to purchase the items that are most important to them while giving local economies a boost. 

(Middle) In the next month Mercy Corps will reach an additional 19,000 households with cash. Some families plan to use the money to purchase food while others have plan to purchase shelter supplies and supplies for their small businesses. 

(Bottom) In Kritipur, Ram, 39, learns how to purify a large can of water using the water purification liquid from her emergency kit.  Mercy Corps has reached over 68,000 people to date with essential items like food, water purification supplies, shelter supplies and cash.

 

 

 

 

  

Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps
Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps
Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps
Tom Van Cakenberghe for Mercy Corps
Miguel Samper for Mercy Corps
Miguel Samper for Mercy Corps
Jul 22, 2015

Final Update-Saving Lives in Niger, Mali & Sahel

Sean Sheridan for Mercy Corps
Sean Sheridan for Mercy Corps

Earlier this month, Mercy Corps celebrated 10 years of work in Niger in the heart of the Sahel - where our work to save lives is poised for continued growth. Reflecting on the aid we have provided over that time we would like to acknowledge your support and call out just a few accomplishments: 

  • Responding to the food crisis in Niger in 2005, Mercy Corps established four emergency programs working with the community to provide assistance to 28,000 beneficiaries by 2011 and over 250,000 today

 

  • Developing business training and financial inclusion; growing goat herds; fostering gender integration; and facilitating farmer field schools are generating positive results which include:
    • Increased support/knowledge for cooperatives like dairy as well greater seed capital for women to grow their small businesses – both of which helped communities cope with food crisis’ (increasing savings and income and allowed beneficiaries to help others in need)
    • Two years after an increased goat distributions many herders have more than five goats, fueling an increase in commerce and income in addition to improved diets through milk availability and consumption.
    • Development of farmer field schooling are improving farming techniques in primarily agriculturally dependent communities; generating greater gender coordination as participation levels rise among woman; and malnutrition reductions of 80% (Sawki)
    • Regularly scheduled child screenings (under 5) have led to underweight levels of 42.9% in 2013 to 22% in 2015.
  • In neighboring Mali, Mercy Corps has been reducing malnutrition through the Irtoun program which supplies emergency food vouchers in exchange for work doing agricultural improvement projects like building irrigation systems, among other projects. As a result, in Asongo, farmers and gardening groups have access to seeds for crops that will fare well in the markets and help improve household nutrition. So far the groups have purchased 25 tons of seed for their crops.

 

While Mercy Corps will continue work to save lives in Niger, Mali, and the Sahel region, we will no longer report work through this project page on GlobalGiving. We encourage you to continue to change lives and donate through Global Giving and our Help Turn Crisis into Opportunity project. You can also follow our progress in Niger, Mali, and other countries in the Sahel.

We are sincerely grateful for your generous donations and for supporting Mercy Corps’ effort to help people survive and communities thrive in Niger, Mali, and the Sahel!

 
   

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