Michael Pöltl was appointed COO of SOS Children’s Villages International in October 2019. Having previously worked for the organization as Deputy Secretary General and Continental Director for CEE/CIS/Baltics, he has tremendous experience in the areas that challenge our organization. After completing his master studies in psychology and having successfully founded and managed three startups, Michael joined SOS Children’s Villages International first in the late nineties where he led the global rollout of the SOS Children’s Villages programme policy. An expert in change management and social entrepreneurship, he worked as a senior consultant for organizational and leadership development after leaving SOS Children’s Villages in 2014. Michael is proud to once again be part of an organisation “that recognises that truly bonding with a child is crucial to their development”. Convinced that our federation is measured by the quality of our programmes, he expects the organization to empower member associations to become strong and self-reliant. “They are our main touch points in reaching the children and youths we serve, so we need to listen to them and adapt our services to their needs”, he explains. This requires everything that we do as one concerted and united General Secretariat to be geared towards strengthening the member associations’ - and their capacity to run independent programmes based on local needs in an environment supported by strong knowledge sharing. Leading the implementation of the SOS Care Promise, Michael Pöltl will prioritise the expansion of services that prevent family separation and promote a range of quality care options that serve the best interests of children and young people. At the core of this is ensuring that care professionals, and the local leaders that work with them, are empowered to take action with children and young people.