At SOS Children’s Villages we work in 137 countries and territories, across all 5 continents. Worldwide, we run 559 Children’s Village communities, over 700 youth programmes and more than 450 schools and vocational training centres, working with local staff who specialise in healthcare, education, and child welfare.
At SOS Children’s Villages UK our work is far reaching as we support projects across the world. Here are just a few examples of programmes we support around the world…
Supporting Children’s Villages in Zambia and The Gambia
We have a special relationship with 2 village communities in Basse, The Gambia and in Chipata, Zambia.
Chipata: SOS Children’s Villages began working in Chipata in 2011. The SOS Children’s Village community in the region provides long-term family-like care to more than 100 children. We also work within the wider community to tackle hardship. Our nursery school, medical centre and social centre provide essential health and nutritional services, income generating skills, education and vocational training and psycho-social support. Around 600 children and their families benefit from this programme. In addition to the medical centre, a mobile clinic treats up to 2000 patients a year, traveling to nearby communities providing basic medical care, preventive medicine and voluntary testing and counselling for those affected by HIV/AIDS.
Basse: Since 2007, children with no one to care for them have been able to find a loving home with 1 of the 12 SOS families in Basse. Under the care and love of an SOS mother, the children grow up together with siblings in a family environment, where they can experience just being a child. They also have access to quality education through nursery, primary and secondary schools. Since 2010, SOS Children’s Village Basse also runs a social centre which reaches out to vulnerable families in the area to prevent these families from breaking apart. We work with these families on an individual basis to ensure they are getting the support that they need, whether that’s food packages, medical care, or educational resources.Sponsor a village now
Family Strengthening in Sri Lanka
We recognise that by helping families out of hardship we can help them stay together. Education and employment opportunities in Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka are limited. The majority of the population make a living on tea estates, which is low paid and leaves families at risk of losing income. SOS Sri Lanka identifies families that are most vulnerable and invites them to enrol on the FSP. The FSP activities include awareness raising in children’s development needs and rights; coaching in parenting and household management skills; family counselling to resolve issues; access to health care services for children and nursing mothers; and access to education.
Sandani lives in Kalapura with her family. Sandani’s husband is a labourer, working for a daily wage, and she was a housewife with no education. They were struggling financially and joined the FSP to give their children a better future. The training they received inspired and motivated them. With guidance from FSP coordinators, Sandani began growing and selling cut flowers. She has expanded her business and now provides products for businesses in cities across Sri Lanka. The FSP has also helped to get Sandani’s children back to school.
“We can now go to school, and we don’t have to struggle for stationery or other school materials like we did before. Before, we often used to cut school because we did not have the right materials. We also used to skip meals as there was no food left over at home. We went through a very tough time. Now when we come from school, we get a balanced meal.” Haruni, the eldest daughter in the family.Read more Family Strengthening stories
Youth Employability in The Gambia
The Youth Training and Employability Programme (YTEP) aims to ensure that young people in The Gambia have the training and employability skills to help them build sustainable livelihoods. As well as vocational training courses, the students can attend basic maths and English lessons and receive skills training in financial literacy, and soft skills training in how to present at an interview, write a CV and work effectively as a team.
Ena was born in a small village. Her family were seasonal farmers and only had a reliable income for a few months every year. She lost her father, the breadwinner in the family, five years ago. Since then, she has become the head of the household and had to manage the small farm whilst trying to keep up with her studies. She was unable to finish her education and married at a young age.
Now separated from her husband, she looks after her elderly mother and two young children. She heard about the YTEP through a friend and enrolled on to the sewing course. She now dreams of becoming a fashion designer and having her own business. “I want to earn enough to provide for my children and my mother. I want to take this opportunity to learn skills and become self-reliant. I want to show my ex-husband that without him I can look after myself, my children and my mother.”See more youth employability stories
Community & Health Centre in Brazil
The Lis Mosekilde Centre’ opened its doors in Araçoiaba, Brazil in December2020. This rural community suffers from a lack of access to quality nutrition, and little government support. The work of SOS in making home visits, checking vaccination cards, conducting health and wellbeing interviews, and creating individualised Family Development Plans has been instrumental in helping health professionals monitor and support local families during the coronavirus pandemic and resulting lockdowns.
The Lis Centre aims to have a direct impact on the lives of 1,000 adults and 2,500 children over the next three years. By the end of 2020, 500 adults and 550 children had already received health assistance, nutritional meals, education support, help with access to public services and advice on family development and employability. In addition, 120 home visits were made during lockdown to 92 families (approximately 460 people) to identify the main social and health needs in the community as well as to promote the Centre’s services. Amongst the children supported by the SOS team during the coronavirus lockdown and school closure, the team reached 250 through daily video activities and 150 through home visits and health assistance appointments. In a very short time, the Lis Centre has embedded itself firmly in the hearts of the Araçoiaba people. It has become known as a welcoming and safe place for people in need – and a fitting memorial to Professor Lis Mosekilde.Find out more about legacy giving