Santa Rosa de Copán

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

Santa Rosa de Copán is a city of over 70,000 people located in north western region of Honduras It’s a major commercial centre where tobacco products, leather and clothing are produced. Santa Rosa de Copán is a transportation hub with highways leading towards cities in Honduras and El Salvador. While this infrastructure is good for economic development, it also means that the region is a major transit route for all kinds of illegal activities that put children and young people at risk. For example: cocaine smugglers work in the region and human traffickers prey on women and girls.

Since 2006, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Santa Rosa de Copán.

Of sex trafficking victims are deceived by family

Human trafficking

In 2018, Copán had the highest number of incidents of human trafficking in Honduras. Young people are at risk of being exploited. The age at which children are first victimised by sex traffickers is between 13 and 15. The majority is deceived by their closest and most trusted peers, including parents, family members and friends. Women and girls are told they will be doing domestic work or modelling, but end up in dangerous exploitative conditions. Others are invited to their friend’s house and are then trafficked for commercial sexual exploitation against their will.

Of people are forced into crime by a gang member

Forced into crime by gangs

Santa Rosa de Copán can be a very dangerous city for children and young people to grow up in. They need a safe place to be themselves, and they need to be given possibilities that will let them live a life without crime. While 36% of people are forced into crime by a gang member, the same number is forced into crime by their friends. The majority are forced to commit crime in their local community. 76% are threatened with physical violence or death threats if they don’t comply. With 80% of cocaine in Honduras entering Guatemala through Copán, the most common type of forced crime is selling drugs. Other crimes include committing robberies and smuggling drugs.

Your support makes a difference for children in Santa Rosa de Copán

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
As part of an environmental workshop, this young boy has created a work of art out of recycled materials (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Honduras).

How your support helps in Santa Rosa de Copán

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.