Family care for every child

Photographer: Claire Ladivicius

Every child deserves to grow up in a loving home. SOS Children's Villages has provided quality alternative care in a family environment for over 65 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 the 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 loving family environment in an SOS family.

Pillars of SOS family care

  • 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 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 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.
     

  • 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 work for and support

Deinstitionalisation

Every child has the right to be cared for by a family. Yet, more than two million children are living in institutions. In our SOS Children’s Village 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.

Reintegration

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. Of those children who left SOS care in 2016, 38% were reunified with their biological families after we supported them to meet their development goals.

Independence

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. In 2016, 58% of young people between 18 and 25 in SOS family care became independent after successfully completing our leaving-care support process.

  • SOS families

    In SOS families, children grow up in a stable, secure and loving home.

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  • Types of alternative care

    Learn about the different types of alternative care we support.

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