“Tianjin”, meaning “a port for the emperor” is China's third-largest urban area, after Shanghai and Beijing, and one of the four municipalities under the Central Government of China. Tianjin is a port city that sits on China's northern coast and has a population of more than 10 million people.
Our Children's Village in Tianjin
Opening in 1987, Tianjin was one of the first Chinese SOS Children’s Villages, along with Yantai. Located approximately 60 miles south-east of Beijing, the Village is on the outskirts of Tianjin, in Hedong.
The Village has many family houses providing orphans and abandoned children with the family-based care they really need. The site also contains the Village director's house, aunts' houses, administration and service area, and an SOS Youth Home for older children, comprising 8 youth flats. There are teachers tutoring the children’s study, Village managers and aunts who provide help to the SOS mothers; all play a role in the care of the children.
An SOS Nursery School provides an early introduction to education for over 50 little children from the Village and the neighbourhood. Children from the Tianjin Village attend local schools, and there are excellent medical facilities nearby.
Tianjin’s Children’s Village features an SOS Social Centre focused on health counselling and community support, and this family support work in Tianjin supports more than 300 vulnerable families in the community. The building includes seminar rooms, a library, computer rooms, a gym, a classroom, and rooms for medical treatment.
Life in and after the Village
We offer everything the children need, including activities designed to stimulate young minds. In their spare time, the children enjoy tours of the city, so that they learn about the history of the society around them.
We also introduce children to local traditions. Calligraphy, dance, and art are all taught by teachers invited to the site at the weekend. Some children learn to play the ehru, a traditional two-stringed Chinese violin.
The Village holds different activities with the community, such as parties and cultural communication events, in which both SOS mothers and children take part and thus build a good relationship with the community. This is a fantastic opportunity which helps children grow accustomed to their wider community beyond the Village, and is a great chance for local people to meet the children who will become their future.
Since we began work in Tianjin, many of the children in our care have gone on to bright academic futures. While many go on to university or college at home, a few have even enjoyed the life-changing opportunity to study abroad.
Children in Tianjin are special, talented, and deserve the very best upbringing. Our Village provides them with a fantastically rich start in life, ensuring all those in our care are able to realise great potential.