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In Russia, more than one in ten people live in poverty. This means many children grow up amid deprivation and with limited life chances. At our six SOS Children's Villages, we offer love and care to some of the most vulnerable, and help local families provide a strong, stable environment as their children grow up. … more about our charity work in Russia

A new chapter for three siblings

Viktoria moves into the SOS Youth Facility in the Summer with her two SOS siblings
Viktoria moves into the SOS Youth Facility in the Summer with her two SOS siblings

After 10 years at the SOS Children’s Village in Tomilino, Russia, 16-year-old Viktoria is taking the next step forward. This summer, she and her two SOS siblings will be moving into the SOS Youth Facility.

Viktoria and her SOS brother, Evgenij, and SOS sister, Elena, are moving to the SOS youth home in Tomilino after their term exams. When the three teenagers leave the Village, their SOS mother, Ekaterina, will welcome new children into her home. 

When young people living in an SOS Children's Village reach the age of 15 or 16, many move to a youth home with others their own age. SOS Children operates over 700 youth facilities around the world. Through training and education, the youth homes help young adults lead an independent life. Many of the youth homes are located in the SOS Village, but some are located outside to further help inspire independence. 

Viktoria’s road to success 

Viktoria will be finishing her final two years of secondary school while living in the youth home. After graduation, she explains that she aspires to attend university to pursue a career as a designer or a dentist. Viktoria excells at school. Last year, she participated in an academic competition in biology, where she was awarded a certificate of honour. She explains that as an invrotervted person, she loves to spend time at home drawing and making crafts.

“I love learning and being creative. Living at the youth facility will give me a taste of what life will be like after SOS Children’s Villages. And, it will give me more privacy and time to study,” explains Viktoria. “This new chapter in my life will not mean that I won’t see my SOS family. You always have to make time for the people you care about.” 

The next step

When Elena turned 15 last year, she received a beautiful silver ring from her SOS mother. This year, Elena will be celebrating her 16th birthday as an independent young adult. She plans on having a large celebration will all of her SOS friends, siblings and family.

SOS youth sits outside at Tomilino Village
Elena is excited to move into the SOS Youth Facility and be surrounded with other young people her age

“I am excited to move into the SOS Youth Facility and be surrounded with other individuals who are my age. I am slightly nervous, but I know that I have my SOS family for support,” says Elena.    

In August, Elena will move in the youth home where her older biological brother, Sergey, has been living for a year. At the youth home, Elena will have the opportunity to pursue higher education to land the job she’s always dreamed about.

SOS mother, Ekaterina, will be sad to see her three SOS child leave, but she explains that she is excited for what’s next for the children. Being a part of their journey to adulthood for almost a decade has been an inspiring experience for Ekaterina.

“Since Viktoria, Elena and Evgenij were youngsters they’ve had a spirit to try new things. I am so honoured to be able to watch all three of them grow up and blossom into the young adults that they are today,” says Ekaterina. “I stay in contact with all of my former SOS children and I will be doing the same with Viktoria, Elena and Evgenij.”

SOS Children operates over 700 youth facilities across the world to help inspire active, young adults. Learn how we are empowering young people through education.