Strengthen families

Photographer: SOS Archives

Families experiencing crises or extreme hardship may have difficulty caring adequately for their children. We work with families and communities to help them build their capacities so that children are well cared for and families stay together.

Every child has the right to grow up in a loving family – preferably with one or both parents. However, sometimes parents are not able to care for their children alone.

The reasons why families participate in SOS family strengthening include economic hardship, death of one or both parents and instable relationships of the parents.

The absence of a stable, protective family exposes children to multiple risk factors and makes them vulnerable to neglect, abuse, discrimination and exploitation.

How we help families stay together

SOS Children’s Villages works to help families stay together through more than 550 family strengthening programmes. All around the world, we take direct action to strengthen families and communities so they can adequately care for their children.

Some of the ways in which we help:
  • Coaching in parenting and household management skills
  • Family counselling to resolve issues
  • Access to health care services for children and nursing mothers
  • Access to education for girls and boys, including school fees, school uniforms, learning materials, tutoring and after-school help
  • Training and equipping parents to earn an income and create a stable home

Working with communities

Each child and family is part of a community. We work with partners to develop strong social support systems for children and families to develop, grow and learn in a positive, supportive environment. Our allies include community-based organisations, local authorities and governments. Together we build resilience in vulnerable families.

Impact of our family strengthening programmes

In 2015, SOS Children’s Villages helped more than 490,000 people, or 90,000 families, through 550 family strengthening programmes worldwide.

On average, families stay in our family strengthening for about two years. In 2016, more than 40% of the families enrolled in SOS family strengthening became independent.

  • Child at risk

    Find out more about the children we support through our programmes.

  • Alternative care

    SOS Children's Villages provides quality alternative care to children who can no longer live with their families.

    Learn more about how we provide children with quality alternative care.