Children in Nicaragua
Nicaragua is the third-poorest country in North and South America. Poverty affects 2.5 million people, a third of whom live in extreme poverty, mainly in the central and Atlantic regions. One out of every three children suffers some degree of chronic malnutrition and 10% live with severe malnutrition.
Our Children's Villages in Nicaragua
We began working in Nicaragua in 1973 following the earthquake which destroyed the capital of Managua. We built a community in Esteli in north-west Nicaragua about 150 km from the capital. There are now six SOS Children’s Villages, as well as numerous social welfare and educational projects which also benefit local communities.
The Esteli Village has 12 family houses. There is also an SOS Nursery, a clinic, SOS Primary and Secondary Schools, SOS Youth Homes for the older children and an SOS Vocational Training Centre with courses in carpentry, dressmaking, baking, etc. By teaching in shifts, the schools can accommodate over 1200 pupils.
A small farm provides most of the needs of the community. Esteli also has several SOS Social Centres, where local working mothers, mostly single, can leave their children during the day. At these centres, hundreds of children are given three meals a day and medical care. The care provided by these SOS Social Centres is a fundamental part of SOS Children's work in Nicaragua.
We built a second Nicaraguan Village in 1979, to the west of Juigalpa, about 138 km north east of Managua. SOS Children's Village Juigalpa has ten family houses and an SOS Nursery, as well as a child day care centre similar to Esteli, for children of single mothers in the vicinity. We set up an SOS Medical Centre which provides treatment for children from the Village and the local community.
We completed a third Village at Managua in 1995. Situated in an attractive residential area in the north-west of the capital, it has 12 family houses built in the local style. Adjoining the Village and providing facilities for neighbourhood families as well as the SOS children are an SOS Nursery, a day care centre and an SOS Medical Centre. An SOS Primary and Secondary School were opened in 1999, with children in the primary school being taught in shifts.
SOS Children's Village Matagalpa opened in 2000. It is in central Nicaragua, in an area which was badly affected by Hurricane Mitch in 1998. The community consists of ten family houses, which provide a home for up to one hundred children, a house for the community Director, a guesthouse and an administrative building with a all-purpose community room.
The SOS Social Centre includes a day care centre, a nursery, a library, classrooms for different workshops (computer, cosmetics, tailoring), a paediatric medical care centre and a dental practice.
Following the devastation caused by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, an emergency relief programme was set up in Leon. There is now an SOS Children’s Village at Leon which opened in 2004. There are a number family homes and a social centre, which provides child day-care and training workshops for the local community.
A sixth SOS Children's Village opened in Rivas in 2007. There are 14 family homes for 126 orphaned and abandoned children.
Apartado Postal 3717
Tel: +505/22/70 08 79, +505/22/78 06 86, +505/22/78 64 14, +505/22/78 64 16