Santo Domingo-Los Mina

SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Dominican Republic).

Santo Domingo’s population of almost 3.5 million people lives in one of the oldest cities in the Caribbean. It has been designated an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990. But it is also a modern and dynamic economic and commercial centre of the Dominican Republic. It is a divided city with great contrasts in terms of standards of living. Most families live in neigbourhoods on the outskirts of the city. Children and young people growing up here lack access to basic services.

Since 1985, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Santo Domingo-Los Mina.

Of girls between 12-19 have been pregnant

High rates of teenage pregnancies

Around 22% of girls between the ages of 12-19 have been pregnant in the Dominican Republic. Pregnancy in teens is higher in rural areas where women have limited access to healthcare, which in turn leads in some cases to increased infant and maternal mortality. Girls who become pregnant need extra support so that they can stay in education. Currently, 31% of adolescents who report having been pregnant did not attend school or college during their first pregnancy, and 49% dropped out after the birth of their first child.

Of children under 18 live in poverty

Children living in poverty

Although there has been recent economic growth that has seen some Dominicans get wealthy, the majority still lives in extreme hardship without access to education and healthcare. Rural areas are usually the poorest but there are poor areas and slums around the capital city’s Santo Domingo. While the wealthier live in sprawling mansions, one fifth of the population lives in slums without access to running water, electricity and sanitation. Children who consume contaminated water are often affected by illness, which can, especially in small children, lead to death. .

Your support makes a difference for children in Santo Domingo- Los Mina

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Hanging out together. Children who grow up in our care often form bonds that last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Dominican Republic).

How your support helps in Santo Domingo-Los Mina

Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Here the children can build safe and lasting relationships. All the children in our care have access to education and healthcare. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.