SOS Children’s Villages’ commitment to long-term care featured on NPR – January 29 2019

SOS Children’s Villages’ commitment to long-term care featured on NPR

SOS Children’s Villages’ commitment to long-term care was featured on NPR. The story shows the incredible difference a caring family can make and highlights one of the key pillars of the work we do: building families for children who need them.

Our comprehensive approach encompasses four major areas: strengthening vulnerable families and communities, providing long-term care for children, educating and empowering youth, and advocating for children’s rights.
“An Orphanage That Doesn’t Seem Like an Orphanage” examines the lives of children living in an SOS Village in Tela, Honduras, and focuses on the benefits of SOS’s powerful, time-tested model for transforming the lives of children and youth through family-based care. For almost 70 years, we have built loving, stable families for orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children in 135 countries and territories.

Sandra Hernandez, who heads her family as an SOS Mother, and her four teenagers are featured in the NPR piece, exemplifying the impact that quality care has on the future of vulnerable children. Their inspirational story of care, love and family portrays the immense value of SOS Children’s Villages. Sandra has over 10 years of experience caring for orphaned and abandoned children, and she is an inspiration to many young people in the SOS Village.

Sandra’s story is not unlike those of the children she cares for. She grew up at a different SOS Village in Honduras, arriving when she was only 3 years old and living there until she was 19. Building on that experience, she has provided the same quality care to her four teenage children. Like many SOS Mothers, Sandra emulates the core goal of the organization, which is to provide a loving home for every child. “The children know I understand them,” she says. “I tell them I went through the same and so they listen to me.”

Carolina Maria Matute, the Director of the SOS Village in Tela, says that what these children need is “a lot of love” and “a lot of affection.” Duke University Professor Kathryn Whetten agrees, emphasizing the importance of love in an orphanage or residential care setting. Whetten has researched residential care for kids who have been separated from their parents for various reasons and says that orphanages are not inherently bad. She explains that in the right environment, children who grow up in orphanages thrive. "What the kids really seem to need is a home-like environment," Whetten says. SOS Children’s Villages provides exactly that.

Read the NPR story here: