SOS Children's Village, Basse
Our charity's SOS Children's Village in Basse was opened in 2007. There are 12 family houses in the Village, all built around a large green playing field. Each house is headed by an SOS mother who looks after between 7 and 10 children who have nobody else to care for them. The SOS mothers have the help of 9 SOS 'aunties', who share their time between the houses depending on where they are needed the most. Together, the SOS mothers and aunties look after over 110 children and babies living in the Children's Village: 40 girls and around 70 boys.
The Children's Village is also the home of the Village Director. There is an office building and two small houses for other members of staff to share. Our charity also runs a small medical clinic and there is a community 'hall' used for performances and gatherings - an open outdoor space shaded from the sun by a big roof.
11-year olds Sainey and Fatima both come from very poor families. They lived in cramped, dangerous houses with few belongings. When their families could no longer care for them they were both welcomed to the SOS Children's Village. They say: 'We are very happy here! We have a caring mother, we have a nice house and clothes and we each sleep in our own beds and have our own cupboards. As a family, we do many things together: we eat together, we have love for each other, we laugh, we play, we dance and we watch TV and even do gardening together.'