Family care for every child

Every child deserves to grow up in a loving home.

SOS Children's Villages has provided quality alternative care in a family environment for almost 70 years. We always put the needs, the individual development, and the best interest of each child at the centre of our work to care for children.

When children lose their parents or can no longer live with them, they need and have a right to suitable alternative care. Suitable alternative care means a safe and caring environment for each individual child to grow and reach their full potential.

SOS Children’s Villages has been providing quality alternative care since 1949. More than 164,000 children have grown up in a nurturing environment in an SOS family. Today, we are active in 135 countries and territories, working to ensure that no child grows up alone.

Pillars of SOS family care

  • We provide care and education to equip each child to face life’s challenges in the future.

  • ​We nurture a secure, loving and reliable relationship between the child and their parent or a primary caregiver.

  • We work with community partners to develop strong social support systems for children and families to develop, grow and learn in a positive, supportive environment.

  • We aim to provide the most appropriate care for each individual child.

  • We focus on the long-term development of each child. We listen to them, and encourage them to participate fully in their own personal development plan.

  • We aim to keep families together. Where this is not possible, we try our best to keep siblings together and to maintain connections with parents and relatives so long as those relationships are safe and supportive for the child.

SOS families

SOS families provide stable, secure and loving care in a family setting for children who have lost their parents or cannot live with their biological family. SOS families provide individualised care and promote the development, education and health of each child.

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We work for and support

Every child has the right to be cared for by a family. Yet, more than two million children are living in institutions. In SOS families, we work to reduce institutional practices to ensure the everyday life of the child and parent is similar to that of natural families. We minimise institutional features by making use of available community infrastructure and facilities as far as possible.

Most children in alternative care would like to be reintegrated with their family of origin. When it is in their best interest, we view the eventual reintegration of children into their biological families as part of the alternative care process.

We prepare children and young people for independence from the day they enter one of our alternative care settings. As they grow older, we teach them to increasingly take responsibility for their lives and development.

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