SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Bolivia).

Located just 10 kilometres from the city of Cochabamba at an altitude of 2,649 metres above sea level, Tiquipaya is a town in central Bolivia with a population of 54,000. Over the past decades, the indigenous communities of Tiquipaya have been joined by a steady influx of migrants. Following the closing of mines in rural areas, migrant families arrived in search of work and a better life. But this rapid urbanization has led to severe overcrowding, poor urban infrastructure, and visible environmental problems. Children and young people growing up with these challenges need extra support.

Since 1974, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Cochabamba-Tiquipaya.

2.1 M
Children are exposed to high risk of floods

Homes and lives at risk due to floods

Bolivia is the second most vulnerable country to climate change in South America – and the second least prepared. In the Andes mountain range, global warming has already generated an average temperature raise of 1 to 2.5°C since the 1970s. This climate evolution directly affects the populations living at high altitude, like Tiquipaya. Across the country, more than 2.1 million children and adolescents live in places at high risk of suffering floods, and more than 600,000 in places exposed to droughts. Those changes in the natural system can compromise the development, well-being, and survival of local populations, particularly children.

Children aged 7-14 are forced to work

Water sources are not safe

Because many migrants are unable to find formal work when they arrive in their new hometown, like Tiquipaya, the children are often forced to work to improve the family’s income. Across the country, 287,000 children aged between 7 and 14 are involved in child labour – and only 15 per cent of them can attend school in parallel. These working children are deprived of a proper education and are exposed to the dangers of working environments. Indigenous children are particularly vulnerable to the worst forms of child labour.

Your support makes a difference for children in Cochabamba

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Can stay together
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Brothers playing chess together. Children who grow up together often form bonds that last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Bolivia).

How your support helps in Cochabamba-Tiquipaya

Strengthening families and communities
When parents face hardships, they can sometimes struggle to give children the care they need. SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities. Each family needs different support so that they can stay together. This support can include workshops on parenting and children’s rights. We also run training so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start their own businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Here the children can build safe and lasting relationships. All the children in our care have access to education and healthcare. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.