Assomada is located on São Tiago, the largest island of Cabo Verde, about 64 km north of the capital Praia. It is home to 12,000 inhabitants and is one of the most important commercial centres in the country. In recent years, many people have moved here in search of work. However, climate change makes agriculture an uncertain source of income. Many families live in poverty, and when the harvest fails, food becomes scarce. In addition, women and children here are at risk of violence.
Since 1984, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families, and advocating for their rights in Assomada.
Assomada and its surroundings are heavily dependent on agriculture. However, due to the scarcity of natural resources, frequent droughts and limited productivity, the yield is very low. In many cases, people cannot easily make a living from agriculture. Income is low and there is not enough food for everyone. This is particularly dangerous for children, as they do not receive enough nutrients to grow healthily. Cabo Verde is still heavily dependent on imported food, which is not affordable for everyone on the islands.
The United Nations has expressed deep concern about a number of issues related to the protection of children and women in Cape Verde, including the risk of physical abuse of women and children, as well as sexual abuse and widespread child labour.
Especially in rural areas such as Assomada and its surroundings, women, and therefore children, are the main victims of poverty and violence.