Aboisso is a city of around 43,000 inhabitants located in the Sud-Comoé Region in south-eastern Côte d’Ivoire. Due to the geographical location, there are reports of child trafficking in the area. School closures due to COVID-19 have made the situation worse, even though the authorities increased their efforts to prevent this exploitation of children.In addition, local families need support as they are lacking access to basic goods and social services such as health care, education, or employment.
Since 1983, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families, and advocating for their rights in Aboisso.
HIV/AIDS rates are high in Côte d’Ivoire and can lead to a descent into poverty. Latest numbers show that 21,000 children were reported to have been infected with the virus across the country – but only 49% of children had access to antiretroviral therapy that suppresses the virus in the body and helps reduce mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Families who are affected by HIV/AIDS often cannot access treatment due to the high cost and long journeys to reach a medical centre. If they are ill and unable to work, they are increasingly at-risk of falling into abject poverty, and unable to ensure a nutritious diet for themselves and their children.
Côte d'Ivoire has made progress in improving access to education, even though many schools still have a shortage of trained teachers. Today, fewer young people are excluded from education and more and more young people have access to secondary education. However, less than 50% of boys and girls enroll in secondary school. Especially in rural areas, girls often drop out of education and start a family with an older man who can provide financially. This makes the girls highly dependent on their husband or father of their children.