Ancud is in southern Chile and has a population of about 42,000 people. The city is situated in the northernmost part of the Chiloé Archipelago, and travelling to and from the city is challenging due to the poor transport infrastructure. The road that reaches Ancud poses many dangers and is often referred to as “the road of death”.
With limited accessibility, Ancud remains isolated and suffers from severe socioeconomic challenges such as the lack of employment options.
Since 2003, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Ancud.
Ancud’s geography makes finding work difficult. While the Chilean government has implemented successful measures to reduce poverty, Ancud has seen minimal improvement because of its isolation from the mainland.
Employment opportunities are scarce, and poverty rates are consistently high at 26%. Severe income inequality has led to worsening social problems within the community like homelessness and alcoholism. These concerns have made it difficult for some families to provide a safe home to raise young children.
Chile currently has one of the lowest public spending on primary and secondary education.
Access to quality education is limited and largely related to a family’s socio-economic standing, which has further exacerbated income inequality in the country.
Public schools and rural primary schools are largely overcrowded with children and have limited sources of funding. The privatization of the education sector also means that money is funneled towards private schools where attendance is not enforced.