Sponsor a child in Albania
Albania is one of the poorest countries and least developed countries in Europe. More than one in ten children have to work to keep their families afloat, and organised crime remains a threat. SOS Children has been helping Albanian children since 1992.
Vulnerable children in Albania need your help, and you can make a difference by sponsorship a child with SOS Children:Sponsor a child in Albania
Corruption slows economic progress
Unemployment is a big problem for Albanians. In a country where agriculture remains the biggest sector by far, more than one in ten are without work. After the economic crisis in the 1990s, many Albanians were forced to leave the country in search of work, and the money they send home is still an important part of the economy. Basic services such as health and education were badly affected, and it is children who have suffered the most.
A risky place to grow up
More and more children are at risk of losing their parents. Lack of support for parents and migration by adults mean many children grow up alone. Poverty is a big problem in rural parts, where infrastructure is particularly underdeveloped. Here, access to healthcare is limited and child labour rates four times higher than in the city. Children from deprived backgrounds are at risk from organised crime, with many girls fall victim to human traffickers.
Our Work in Albania
SOS Children came to Albania in 1992, after seeing the terrible conditions rife in children's homes in the capital Tirana. By 1995, we had established our a Children's Village in Albania, offering care to children who have lost their parents and support to families in the region.
When SOS Tirana opened in 1995, 13 Family Houses took in 91 lone children in need of our protection. In 1999, the war in Kosovo meant that many refugee children needed our help, and we provided temporary accommodation in the Village.
In 2003, we extended our reach into the community, helping fragile families stay together in the face of social and financial adversity. By working with local experts and agencies, we offer all-round guidance on parenting, personal finance and entrepreneurship, as well as advice on essential service such as education and healthcare.
An SOS Nursery cares for children from the local community, bringing play and learning to infants and allowing mothers the space to earn a living. A school provides primary and secondary education to children from both the Village and surrounding neighbourhood. Beyond school, young adults raised in the Village move off-site to flats in central Tirana where continued support from SOS Children helps prepare them for independent life.
For more information about the work we do in Albania see our page on Albanian Orphans.
13-year-old Yllka from SOS Children's Village Tirana has written about her SOS mother:
"A mother is someone who loves you unconditionally. She takes care of you from the first moment you come in to this world. Many children are happy because they have a mother, while many others do not have one. I am one of those children. I came to the SOS Children's Village because I didn't have a mother. Here I found one, I have my SOS mother. I love and cherish her. She cares that I'm well, healthy and happy. She makes sure I have what I need and grow up to be strong and independent. I love my SOS mother.”
SOS Children Albania
P.O. Box 1524
Tel: +355 4241597211
Fax: +355 42415973