Impact & Testimonials

When you sponsor a child, you help provide a child in need with the love and long-term support they need.

Can I Really Make A Difference?

When you sponsor a child, you invest in a child’s
future and make a lifelong impact.

Favour

Alumna from SOS Children's Village Isolo

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When Favour was only a few months old, she was brought to SOS Children’s Village Isolo in Lagos, Nigeria, where she was welcomed into a loving SOS family with an SOS Mother and 10 SOS siblings. Favour doesn't know who her biological parents are or what circumstances brought her to SOS. What she does know is that SOS gave her the love, care and support she needed to thrive.

With the support from her SOS Mother and a stable home in place, Favour excelled in school and passed each year at the top of her class. She was determined to overcome the odds in a country where poverty, child marriage and early pregnancy prevent girls from going to school.

"I am thankful to SOS," she said. "I learned so many things that helped me become a responsible and independent person. SOS is a home that gives 100 percent to education, medical, security and behavioral support. These are key things that are important to anyone's life."

It's been more than 10 years since Favour left her family at SOS Children's Villages Isolo for her first year at Bowen University in Osun, Nigeria. Since then, Favour, now 30, has become a wife, a mother, an account executive and a role model for children and youth who live in the village where she grew up.

"I come back to SOS to encourage the kids. I counsel and teach them so they do not go astray," Favour said in a recent interview. "I want them to grow up to be successful. I want them to do better than me. I want them to know that with hard work and a positive attitude they can achieve anything."

Manju

Lives at an SOS Village in India

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Manju was welcomed into a loving SOS family at the SOS Village in Nagapattinam, India, after her parents passed away. But, after just five months at the village, Manju was taken away by her uncle and forced to be his domestic servant. He didn't let her go to school. After two miserable years with her uncle, Manju- just 14 years old at the time- left her uncle's house at night and boarded a bus to the one place where she knew she'd be safe- the SOS Village in Nagapattinam. Manju is now one of 125 orphaned and abandoned children- who are part of 12 SOS families-currently living at the SOS Village in Nagapattinam. At the village- one of 32 SOS Villages in India- each child received individualized care by a trained SOS Mother. There are extracurricular activities such as karate, yoga, dance, music, drawing and career counseling. Manju says that she wants to be a police officer when she's older.

"I was just 14 years old when this incident happened. I struggled a lot to reach here. I have no idea what would have happened if I hadn't come to SOS. I have a future today only because of SOS."

Marc

Lives at an SOS Village in Nigeria

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Marc dreams of becoming a doctor. More specifically, the 7-year-old soccer fan wants to take care of children. After learning a bit more about Marc’s background, it's easy to understand why.

Marc had been living on the streets before he moved in with his new SOS family two years ago. His mother, who is mentally disabled, used to send Marc and his brother to the streets begging for food, clothes and money. Sometimes she would scream or throw stones at Marc if she wasn't satisfied with his efforts. If the family didn't succeed in securing any food for the day, they would search for food in dumpsters.

"I was not happy but I didn't know what to do," Marc said in a recent conversation with SOS staff at his SOS Village in Nigeria. "I wanted to run away, but I didn't know where to go." As far as a place to sleep at night, the family would find any place they could: on a fishing boat, beside a river, in an abandoned building, inside an old car — even at a garbage dump. But two years ago, Marc's life would take a dramatic turn.

During a visit to a rural community, the Nigerian government's social welfare division found Marc and referred him to SOS Children's Villages for care and protection. He was soon welcomed by his new SOS family at SOS Children's Villages Owu-Ijebu.

In his first few weeks at the village, Marc screamed in the middle of the night and was always frightened by meeting new people. He would also act confused when his SOS mother told him that he wouldn’t have to go out of the village to beg for food. After professional counseling and support from other SOS staff, Marc was able to adjust to his new home.His new SOS family says that Marc is a happy child who plays with the other children. They also say that he's a particularly good artist.

Marc never went to school before moving in with his new SOS family. He therefore attends a summer class and a book club so that he can continue catching up to his peer in the areas of reading and writing. He will start the first grade at the SOS Hermann Gmeiner School this fall.

From Famine to Harvard

"Right now, there are about 86,000 children who are growing up at an SOS Village across more than 134 countries. Like me, these children were alone or without adequate care before they were welcomed into their SOS family. Also like me, these children would be out on the streets or worse if it weren't for the love, care and stability they get at the SOS Village where they live."

Gebre, Alumni from SOS Village Mekelle, Ethiopia and Child Sponsor

Paying It Forward

"Quite frankly, I don’t think I would be alive and well if it weren’t for SOS Children’s Villages. That’s my motivation. I’ve been given a life and a productive future because of SOS and because of people who do what I’m doing now — volunteering and fundraising on a small level. Someone did that for me once. I grew up at an SOS Village in Germany, from the time I was 2 years old. I left that Village when I went to college and then I moved to the U.S. SOS has done so much for me and my sister."

Irene, Alumni from an SOS Village in Germany, Sponsor, and Volunteer

Why Should I Become A Sponsor?

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decided to change a life.

Rachel

Sponsors three children in Nigeria

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Rachel lives just outside Boston with her husband and three young children — Oliver, Linus, and Ariele. Her family sponsors three children in Nigeria, and each child they sponsor is about the same age as one of Rachel's own children. She told us that one of the main reasons she and her husband decided to become SOS Sponsors was to teach their three children about other cultures.

Like all SOS Sponsors, Rachel and her family receive updates a twice a year that include photos of the children they sponsor and information about their progress in school, what activities they’re enjoying and more. She told us that through the updates, her family can see the impact they’re having on the children by helping to provide them with food, a safe home and an opportunity to grow and develop.

"I hope that my children will communicate with our sponsored children in Nigeria via letters and pictures, that way, they can realize how similar people are, even if they may be in another country. Sponsorship feels real. You feel connected with the children and village through the newsletter updates, through the cards that you get from the child. You feel like you are part of their lives and that's not easy to do.”

Lori

Sponsors a child in Uzbekistan and SOS Villages
in Zimbabwe and Nepal

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During the week, Lori Pawlowski edits a physics journal and her daughter, Megan, is celebrating summer before entering the 6th grade.

But in their spare time, Lori and Megan are two of the most creative supporters of SOS Children’s Villages.

Lori’s SOS story starts with Uzbekistan. She adopted her son from there and was looking to help children in Uzbekistan who didn’t have a family. She learned that SOS has three SOS villages in Uzbekistan for orphaned and abandoned children and decided to sponsor a child from one of them.

“I felt an immediate connection to SOS’s unique family model, which consists of multiple families living within a village and interacting closely with the surrounding community,” Lori said recently in an interview with SOS. “As much as I love my son and would never have changed anything, I think he would have benefited immensely from a program like the SOS Children’s Village.”

After receiving updates from her sponsored SOS child in Uzbekistan, Lori was inspired to do even more. Lori and Megan partnered with Prosperity Candle—an organization in Massachusetts that works with resettled refugees and women artisans from the developing world—to make special SOS-branded candles. They then began reselling the candles at craft shows and private parties and donating the proceeds to SOS. Megan even asked guests at her 11th birthday party to buy an SOS candle instead of a giving her presents.

Through the money they have raised, Lori and Megan have been able to support orphaned and abandoned children by sponsoring SOS Villages in Zimbabwe and Nepal. Lori and Megan said they hope to help even more children by selling another 200 candles by the end of the year. Lori and Megan make a tremendous impact on the lives of some of the world’s most vulnerable children. SOS Children’s Villages relies on SOS Sponsors like Lori and Megan to help provide loving homes, education and medical care to children at 560 SOS Villages around the world.

Helping a Child in Need

"I'm in a position where I can help a child, and I love children. I used to be a teacher and it was obvious that Joseph needed someone to help him. Even though at that point he was only about 2 years old, I wanted to do something to enable SOS to do what needs to be done so that he can have a decent life and childhood. I want him to have the childhood that he deserves to have… I’m happy he started off at a young age getting the help he needs so that he can properly develop."

Suzanne, Sponsors a child at SOS Children's Village Lagos, Nigeria

Watch videos: Sponsorship changes lives

Over 430,000 sponsors helped change the lives of vulnerable children around the world last year.

Your Impact

CHILD SPONSOR VILLAGE SPONSOR

As an SOS Child Sponsor, you have the opportunity to invest directly in the life of a child. With an ongoing monthly donation, you will be making a difference in the life of a vulnerable child and providing them with loving, constant and reliable care.You help provide:

A family environment with a loving SOS Mother

A safe home and a warm bed

Healthy meals and medical care

Preschool, primary and secondary education and job training

As an SOS Village Sponsor, you have the opportunity to invest directly in a community.You help provide:

Community play areas

Support for outreach programs that help keep families together

A safe, supportive community and neighborhood

A loving home, quality education and medical care

SOS worldwide impact in numbers
Family
553,600
children and families made stable and strongRead more
Globe
943,700
medical and nutrition services performedRead more
Book
242,000
children educated and trained in job skillsRead more
Medical Kit
726,500
emergency response services providedRead more

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