Santa Rosa de Copán
Santa Rosa de Copán is a tourist destination and has its origins in the prosperous tobacco trade, however, today the story of the town and its surrounds is very different.
With more than half of all children suffering from malnourishment and the majority of residents unable to access basic social services, SOS Children’s Villages saw a population in dire need. Through our presence in Santa Rosa de Copán, we have been striving to improve the lives of vulnerable children and young people in the region.
Children in Copán have been made vulnerable by extreme poverty
The mountain town of Santa Rosa de Copán has a population of nearly 43,000. It is located in northwest Honduras and is the governmental centre of the department of Copán.
However, even with these prosperous roots, Santa Rosa de Copán and its surrounds make up the poorest region of the country. Families live in substandard housing, access to basic social services such as medical care is very limited and half of all children are malnourished. In more rural areas, only 7% of the population have access to electricity.
Without the protection of a parent or carer, many children face a dangerous life on the streets and have little choice but to allow themselves to be recruited by organised gangs known as ‘maras’. Once children become part of a gang, it is very difficult to break the cycle of poverty, crime and drugs, even in adulthood.
Low levels of education and high illiteracy
Apart from poverty, lack of education is one of the city’s biggest social challenges. Many children drop out of school in order to work, to help support their families. Worryingly, the city’s primary school also has a low enrolment rate for both boys and girls. A very low number of students actually complete their high school studies.
As a result, Santa Rosa de Copán has an illiteracy rate of 68% and children who do not have the opportunity to pursue education have very little hope of improving their futures.
Our work in Santa Rosa de Copán
SOS Children’s Villages has been active in Santa Rosa de Copán since 2006, providing support to children and families from the surrounding areas.
SOS Children's Village Santa Rosa de Copán was opened in 2007 and has several families that provide a stable and loving environment for children who are no longer able to live with their parents. Our SOS children grow up alongside with SOS brothers and sisters and are cared for by a dedicated SOS Mother.
SOS Children's Villages works closely with the Honduran Ministry of Labour, supporting programmes that aim to eradicate child labour in Santa Rosa de Copán.
Orphaned children in Honduras are given a happy family life in our Children's Villages. Will you become a child sponsor today?