Learning how to better build societies damaged by conflict, prejudice, poverty, and illicit economies is one of the great challenges of the 21st century. Doing so with a good heart and a focus on the inherent dignity of other is the best place to start. The Meyer Business on the Frontlines Program (BOTFL) seeks to imagine new solutions to some of the world’s most challenging problems and to become a forum for all organizations committed to improvement, no matter how diverse, to work together to build stable and prosperous communities.

The program offers a range of courses to address these critical issues around the world and in the United States. Not limited to multi-disciplinary course work in the classroom, graduate students and faculty from across the University of Notre Dame work directly on projects with partners in the field, ranging from international humanitarian organizations to local NGOs and from Fortune 500 companies to religious organizations. Many BOTFL projects focus on agriculture, infrastructure and mining, as these economic sectors can frequently absorb large numbers of unskilled young men before or after conflict. Our projects have also extended to micro-finance, youth unemployment, post-civil war reconciliation, business incubators, health and nutrition, human trafficking, child prostitution, and disaster preparedness. Since 2008, BOTFL teams have worked on nearly sixty such projects in over twenty-five countries including: Bosnia, Lebanon, Kenya, Uganda, Egypt, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Senegal, Lesotho, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Honduras, Cambodia, Mindanao in the Philippines, Indonesia, East Timor, and Sri Lanka. By the estimates of one of our partners, thousands of people now have livelihoods that would not have had opportunities had it not been for our work in the field. 

The challenge may be great; the road to travel may be far. Nevertheless, never underestimate the human dignity associated with a good day’s work.

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