Guatemala City

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

Guatemala City is the capital and largest city of Guatemala. The city is also the most populous urban area in Central America. Nearly three million people live in the metropolitan areas of the city, due to migration from rural areas over the years. The city itself has over one million inhabitants, most of whom are under the age of 14. Many of these children growing up in Guatemala City experience crime and violence on a daily basis.

Since 1984, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Guatemala City.

Femicide happens every day

Increase in femicides

The Guatemalan Public Prosecutor's Office registered the most cases of violence against women in Guatemala City - over 29,400 between January and July 2022). Most complaints involved psychological violence, followed by physical violence. Not all women report abuse because their reports aren’t followed through by the justice system. 71% of femicides in Guatemala go unpunished. Guatemala is among the twenty most violent countries in the world, with violence against women being the most common crime committed.

Of girls aged 10-14 experienced sexual violence

Domestic violence

In Guatemala, girls and adolescent women live in fear of violence every day. They are exposed to all forms of violence, from physical, sexual and psychological violence to femicide. Pregnancies among teenage girls are closely linked to sexual violence. Around 6% of girls under 14 are, or have been, pregnant. Sexual violence often occurs at home within the family circle. 70% of abused children become infected with sexually transmitted diseases.

Your support makes a difference for children in Guatemala City

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
We support families to stay together. If children cannot grow up with their family of origin, we support them to form lifelong bonds (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Guatemala).

How your support helps in Guatemala City

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.