Our Work

Quality Care for Children

Situation Overview

A stable, nurturing environment lays the foundation for a child’s healthy development. Unfortunately, not every child has this advantage.

An estimated 220 million children —1 out of every 10 children worldwide — have lost, or are at high risk of losing parental care.

Without the stability of a family, a child faces an increased risk of malnutrition, violence, exploitation, and other life-threatening circumstances.

children live in extreme poverty
children have lost or are at risk of losing parental care
(that's every 10th child)
children are displaced from their homes
children have lost one or both parents

Our Impact
children live in loving homes
SOS Villages worldwide
countries have SOS Villages
in the United States (Florida and Illinois)

A Stable & Loving Family

SOS Children’s Villages builds families for orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children. When children cannot stay with their family or have no family, we give them a safe home, together with their siblings, where they can grow up in one of our SOS families.

SOS Family-Based Care is based on four guiding principles:

The SOS Mother

A trained caregiver who builds a nurturing relationship with each individual child in her care.

Brothers and Sisters

Both biological siblings and SOS siblings develop natural family bonds with one another.

The Home

Each SOS Family creates a loving environment marked by safety, a sense of belonging and shared responsibilities.

The Village

A safe, supportive community of neighbors, with access to psychosocial support, medical centers, schools and recreational facilities.

Learn More: SOS Children's Villages in Action

Case Studies

A Home for a Vulnerable Child in Sudan

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Nine-year-old Suleyman was left homeless and alone when he was 5. After more than a year on the streets, he was found by staff from an SOS Village in Khartoum, Sudan, and welcomed into an SOS family.
Suleyman’s transition from street life to a stable family life wasn’t easy. Lacking many basic skills, he was frustrated and angry and often communicated through violence.
Suleyman’s SOS Mother played a major role in helping him adapt and integrate with his siblings. She encouraged Suleyman and her other SOS children to share meals, to play games as a group, and to take responsibility for looking after one another.
With support from his SOS Mother, Suleyman was able to overcome his past trauma. He learned to trust his new family and began to love his SOS brothers and sisters. These days, Suleyman takes the lead in welcoming new children to the SOS Village in Khartoum.
Nearly half the population of Sudan is under the age of 14. In a country struggling with armed conflict and poverty, children are among the most deeply affected, and an estimated 3.5 million are without parental care.

Finding a New Home After Disaster Strikes

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Ten-year-old Usha lost her parents and her home when an earthquake hit Nepal in 2015. Her surviving relatives were not able to care for her. A couple of weeks later, she was welcomed into an SOS Village in Sanothimi.
“On the day Usha arrived, she had difficulty adjusting to the SOS Family. She was crying and was very upset. She slept with her SOS Mother the first night,” said the national director of SOS in Nepal, Shankar Pradhananga.
Today, Usha is attending an SOS school. Her favorite subject is Nepalese. She is getting along well with her SOS brothers and sisters and has a special bond with a toddler in the village who also lost her caregivers to the earthquake.

Surviving Trauma in Damascus

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Adil and his two brothers were orphaned in 2011 when a rocket fell on their house in Damascus, killing their parents.
For the next two years, the boys lived with various relatives, but they eventually ended up at a shelter for unaccompanied children and youth. In March 2013, they were moved to the SOS Children's Village in Damascus, where they were given an SOS Mother to look after them and were reenrolled in school.
Adil was only 5 years old when he arrived at the SOS Village, and he had suffered a lot of trauma. At the SOS Village, he was able to see a psychological therapist to help him through his issues.
Adil is now 7 years old and is doing much better. He is thriving as a second-grade student and loves science. He is still living in the SOS Village in Damascus, which is home to about 120 children like Adil who have been orphaned or abandoned.

Download the Fact Sheet

Download our informational fact sheet to learn more about the Family-Based Care Programs at SOS Children's Villages around the world.


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