Côte d’Ivoire

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 Côte d’Ivoire)

Côte d'Ivoire is located on the southern coast of West Africa. After its independence in 1960, the country enjoyed relative political and socio-economic stability. However, since the 1990s, the country has lived through severe economic crsis and armed conflicts. The unrest lasted many decades and by the time the civil war ended in 2011, nearly one million people had been forced to leave their homes.

SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children and young people without parental care, or at risk of losing it, in Côte d’Ivoire since 1971.

Children are at risk

The consequences of the civil war still affect many people and particularly children who have lost parental care. Many children grow up without any support, struggling to survive as street children in the country's urban centres, begging for food and money. Children living in families experiencing hardship are, moreover, extremely vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation and recruitment by armed gangs. Many children under 14 years are also forced into the worst forms of child labour on cocoa plantations.
Of people are chronically undernourished


Economic growth in Côte d'Ivoire in recent years has not benefitted everyone equally, leaving many people undernourished, especially in the rural areas of the country. In 2020, 11% of people in Côte d'Ivoire were not able to get or produce enough food and 22% of all children under five were chronically malnourished. Rural communities, particularly in the west and north of Côte d'Ivoire, are disproportionately more affected by, and vulnerable to, malnutrition.

Of children between 5 and 17 are engaged in child labour

Children are exploited

Although Côte d’Ivoire made some advancement in efforts to eliminate child labour, many children are still exposed to severe forms of child labor. They sometimes work in the harvesting of cocoa and coffee. Children, who work in cocoa production, are often deprived of adequate schooling and exposed to different types of risks and hazards, including exposure to pesticides, insect and snake bites, machete wounds, fatigue and back problems. .

Of the population lives below the poverty line

Income inequality

While there has been a significant reduction in poverty, not everyone has benefitted and deep inequalities persist. Income inequality has increased rapidly due to fluctuating cocoa prices on the world market, as well as the impact of climate change on agriculture. This now threatens the livelihoods of rural families in particular. Children and women from these families are severely disadvantaged.

Together we can make a difference for children in Côte d’Ivoire

Adults and children
Are supported in the community
Learn at our kindergartens and schools
Children and adults
Received medical support
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
SOS Children’s Villages Côte d’Ivoire supports families in the community. Marie had to leave school early and start sewing to support her family. Her mother sought support from SOS Children’s Villages in Côte d’Ivoire, and Marie was able to improve her skills and earnings. “My dream today is to develop my skills at first and then allow other young people to come and train with me,” said the young dressmaker (photo: SOS Children’s Villages in Côte d’Ivoire).

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