Karlino is located around 9 km from Białogard town in Białogard County, approximately 30 km from the Baltic Sea, in the north-west of Poland.
Karlino town is home to around 9,400 people while Białogard has almost 24,000 inhabitants. As with many other rural regions in the country, Białogard remains one of the most deprived in Poland.
Since 2005, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Karlino.
Every fifth child in Poland is undernourished, lacking essential nutrition from their diet.
Problems of hunger and malnutrition are greater problems in rural areas of Poland, like Karlino, where poverty levels are higher.
Nutritional deficiencies have multiple effects on children’s physical and mental development, affecting their ability to learn and concentrate at school, limiting their growth and well-being, and weakening their immune system, making them more vulnerable to illness and disease.
On average, just over 10% of young children aged 3-5 years are unable to take part in pre-primary education. However, in rural areas, almost 35% of young children miss this opportunity.
Early childhood education can be particularly beneficial for disadvantaged children, setting them up for success in their later education. It also contributes to their social and cognitive development and social inclusion. In addition, children in school are less vulnerable to safeguarding issues, such as abuse or neglect.