November 20, 2010: The Jolie-Pitt Foundation today announced a donation of $150,000 to SOS Children’s Villages – USA. The donation is given in recognition of National Adoption Day, which celebrates adoptive families and highlights the needs of the over 100,000 children still waiting for adoptive families in the United States. SOS Children’s Villages play a vital role in the healing and stabilization of foster care children, and constitute a critical step along the way to family reunification or adoption for many children.
SOS Children’s Villages provides loving, stable homes to children around the world whose biological families cannot properly care for them. Founded over 60 years ago, SOS operates over 500 Villages in 130 countries including Illinois and Florida in the US. The Jolie-Pitt Foundation donation will provide the supplemental long-term financial support needed for a family of four foster children in an SOS Village in the US.
Dr. Heather Paul, CEO of SOS Children’s Villages – USA expressed her gratitude for the on-going support from Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt: “I am truly thankful that Angelina and Brad understand the power of family – the kind of stable family that SOS holds as an essential part of healthy child development. Together, Angelina and Brad have been eye-witnesses to the great work of SOS in Ethiopia, Jordan, a Darfur refugee camp in Chad, and Haiti. Angelina and Brad know that children’s need for a family is universal.”
In the US, SOS Children’s Villages is a haven for a foster child, a haven from the storm of multiple placements, abuse or neglect. SOS puts foster children back together again with their brothers and sisters, and strengthens them for a bright future – a future that can include reunification with a biological parent, adoption, or success as an independent adult.
Through this donation, The Jolie-Pitt Foundation will provide support to an SOS foster care family for a number of years. This long-term approach is crucial to transforming a child who has suffered years of abuse - healing cannot happen overnight.
SOS Children’s Villages in the US have achieved impressive results. Less than 50% of foster care children in the US complete high school, while SOS youth have a completion rate of almost 100%. Over 300 foster children now call SOS home in Illinois and Florida, including many groups of biological brothers and sisters.
SOS Children’s Villages operates under these core principles:
- Siblings should grow up together in a family-based environment.
- Children should be re-unified with their biological family whenever possible.
- Foster care children should never “age-out” of the system. Post-high school support is critical to a young adult’s long-term success.
SOS Children’s Villages in the US receive public support for the basic needs of their foster children. The additional services needed to transform a child’s life are provided by private donors. The $150,000 donation from The Jolie-Pitt Foundation will fund numerous services such as full-time, professionally trained caregivers, counseling, intensive support toward family reunification, vocational training or college preparation.
Follow Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's lead. Make a donation to SOS Children's Villages.
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About SOS Children's Villages
For 60 years, SOS Children's Villages has been dedicated to providing family-based, long-term care to children who can no longer grow up with their biological families. They also focus on preventing the conditions that cause children to be orphaned and abandoned. Through its Children’s Villages and Family Strengthening Programs, SOS impacts the lives of over 1 million people each year. In 2009, SOS Children's Villages received the Save the World Award. SOS has also received numerous honors including the Mother Teresa Gold Medal, the Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize, and the Vietnam Friendship Medal.