Mexico City is the capital of Mexico, but it is also the largest and most important city in the country because it is the political, educational, cultural, and financial centre of Mexico.
The capital city stands on the Valley of Mexico. The latest population estimates for the city is 8.85 million, with 19% of the people being from indigenous communities in search of a better life.
Mexico City contributes almost 22% to the country’s GDP. It is among the top richest cities in the world and the richest city in Latin America. However it has limited non-urban land that is protected by environmental laws so it does not have a large agricultural income.
The massive migration to Mexico City has led to informal settlements and shanty towns. The world’s largest mega-slum area in 2006 was in Mexico City, in Neza-Chalco-Izta. Here, about 4 million people live, mostly on land they do not own. The city government has worked to remove the shanty towns and replace them with boroughs known as Zonas Marginales, or marginal zones. Unfortunately, the areas are rife with crime and poverty, with poorly maintained block buildings.
Silent suffering in Mexico City
While the financial and commercial areas are bustling with positive energy and growth, there is another side of Mexico City, where people face daily threats to their lives and livelihoods.
Only 17% of the youth of Mexico City under the age of 15 are educated properly and expected to attend higher education. The rest are either out-of-school youths or working to help support the family. They lack the skills to apply for decent jobs which make them vulnerable to harsh work conditions, low wages, and uncaring employers. The city government has yet to step in and help these children get a decent education.
Our Work in Mexico City
SOS Children's Villages started in 1971, which was the tear of the Corpus Christi Massacre - a violent incident that left 30 students dead and scores injured. It was a stressful year to begin our work, yet made us realise the urgency to protect the young children from further harm.
In our Children's Village, there are several SOS families, where orphaned and abandoned children are cared for by SOS Mothers and live with SOS siblings. These children are educated at local schools and integrated into the local community. They are also enjoy sports, arts, and other activities that would help them decide the path they want to take.
After secondary school, the youth are given a choice to pursue higher education or start working. If they decide they want to work, SOS Children's Villages provides them with relevant vocational training and support to make responsible decisions. We also help them transition from student to working adult with our SOS youth programme that offer shared accommodations and train them to live and manage their work income.
Mexico City is a vibrant and boisterous place. While some thrive here, others suffer from poverty and inequality. We work to support the city's most vulnerable, and care for children who have lost parental care. Today, you can sponsor a child in SOS Children's Village Mexico City.