Manila is the capital of the Philippines, and one of the world's most densely populated cities. Our Children's Village is on the outskirts of the city, which is a bustling metropolis.
As you go through Manila, you experience huge contrasts. On the one hand, there are gated communities and modern shopping malls. On the other, many of the poorest live in makeshift housing and lack basic services.
Amongst the urban poor are families and their children, who may have moved to the city in search of better opportunities. However, thousands end up living in slum-like conditions. These improvised shacks are often at risk of being washed away by flooding. In most situations, there is a lack of access to clean water, sewerage systems, electricity, and social services.
When a child grows up in these conditions, they often end up being malnourished as their parents struggle to afford food. Some children end up working to support the family income, such as digging in rubbish dumps to search objects that can be reused. Consequently, children often miss out on school. Children who spend time on the streets working are at risk of exploitation, violence and the false promises of human traffickers.
Supporting families for over 30 years
Being present in Manila for over three decades means that we are well-known locally and respected for our work. To deliver the best support, we work closely with local children organisations. For example, we regularly host workshops on child protection.
Our permanent community programmes support vulnerable children and young people all year round. We also provide emergency relief when needed. In 2009, Manila experienced the worst flooding in 42 years after a typhoon hit the region. We helped flood victims to survive with essential items including food and clothes.
A loving home for orphans
When a child has lost parental care, they can find a new home SOS Children's Village Manila. Children grow up in a family home with their SOS brothers and sisters, and are cared for by a loving SOS Mother. We believe that a family-based environment ensures each child grows up with love, respect and security.
Each family home has a small vegetable patch which the family uses to grow produce. Children from SOS families go to the schools in the nearby area, as well as events arranged by the local community. If needed, children in our care receive special support such as help with school work or psycho-social therapy.
Older children can join our SOS youth programmes, as they begin their steps towards independence. With the specialised help they start vocational training courses, attend higher education and look for work. Increasingly, the young people make decisions about their future and are encouraged to be ambitious. In addition, SOS Mothers are trained at the SOS vocational training centre in Manila.
Since 1988 children and families have been supported by SOS Children in the capital of the Philippines. Will you sponsor a child today and ensure a child is given the chance for a better future?