Northern Cyprus

SOS Children’s Villages ensures that children grow up with the care, protection and relationships they need to become their strongest selves (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Northern Cyprus).

Cyprus, the third-largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, is home to a population of 1.2 million people. The country is partitioned into two main parts; the southern Republic of Cyprus remains under the Cyprus government, associated with Greece and comprises 59% of the island, while the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus constitutes 36% of the island. The north is recognized only by Turkey and the people living in Northern Cyprus are affected by the long-standing political disputes.

SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children and young people without parental care, or at risk of losing it, in Northern Cyprus since 1993.

Children are at risk

Children and young people under the age of 18 constitute around 19% of the Cypriot population, which is roughly 236,000 people. The political situation in Cyprus has a significant effect on the lives of the children living there; from barriers to obtaining citizenship to a lack of international funding for some projects, children may be deprived of their rights. Children living in poverty and those with disabilities need special support
1 in 5
Children are at risk of poverty

Child poverty

Almost 14% of Cypriots are at risk of poverty. However, children are disproportionately vulnerable to poverty, with 19% of under 18s at risk. The risk of poverty is higher for households run by single parents (21%) or where parents are not employed (36%). Around 9% of children face severe material deprivation. Children born into poverty are more likely to experience a wide range of health problems, as well as face social exclusion.

1 in 3
Young people are unemployed


The unemployment rate in Cyprus is relatively high due to financial and political issues in the country, with a national rate of almost 9%. Young people are disproportionately affected by unemployment, with a rate of almost 12%. Youth who are out of work have decreased well-being and greater social isolation. They also lack opportunities to gain and improve their skills. This limits their current and future employment prospects.

Of arriving migrants are children

Children migrating

Cyprus receives thousands of migrants each year, and asylum seekers now represent 5% of the island nation's population. Overcrowded living conditions in refugee camps means minors often need to share a bed or sleep on the floor. Many children arriving in Cyprus are unaccompanied or separated from their families, surviving in miserable and unhygienic condition. Torn from their homes, many children have experienced violence and traumatic events.

Together we can make a difference for children in Northern Cyprus

Adults and children
Are supported in the community
Children and adults
Attend our kindergartens and trainings
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
SOS Children’s Villages works to protect the rights and privacy of children. As you may notice, we do not show any identifiable photos of children in general information about Northern Cyprus. This is because we have limited permission from the children and/or their legal guardians (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Northern Cyprus).

Working together for sustainable development

In 2015, leaders from 193 countries committed to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This 15 year plan aims to improve the lives of people by ending poverty, fighting inequality and protecting the planet.
GOAL 1: End poverty
SOS Children’s Villages supports families and communities to keep families together and to help them break out of the cycle of poverty.
GOAL 4: Ensure quality education for all
Every child and young person SOS Children’s Villages supports has access to education, from kindergarten right up to vocational training or university.
GOAL 8: Equal job opportunities for all
SOS Children’s Villages supports young people in developing the skills and self-confidence they need to find decent work and train parents so that they can have a stable income.
GOAL 10: Reduce inequalities
SOS Children’s Villages works to keep children safe by promoting peaceful and inclusive communities. We provide training on children’s rights and positive parenting. .
GOAL 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies
We advocate laws and practices that ensure social inclusion and protection for children and young people without parental care or from marginalized households.

Let’s keep on protecting children and young people!

Many children have been able to find a safe and secure home. With your help, we can continue to change their lives