Every child belongs to a family and grows up with love, respect and security.
We provide care through our family-like villages, our family strengthening programmes and our community service centres. We build families for children in need, we help them shape their own futures, and we share in the development of their communities.
The SOS Care Guarantee
Child: Unique and respected
Every child has a unique set of talents and strengths. We recognise their potential, listen to their ambitions for the future and offer our support to make them a reality. Knowing the challenges of children and young people, we do not give up on them but guide and accompany them to become independent and contributing members of society.
Parent: Caring and reliable
Children develop best in a close and trusting relationship with an adult who takes the role of a parent. They need someone to be there for them no matter what – accepting them and caring for them. Someone who has the skills to guide each child’s development. We work to ensure that children can experience a reliable relationship with a caregiver based on love, respect and security.
Community: Safe and supportive
Every child needs safe and supportive spaces, where they can experience a happy childhood and a healthy development. We support families to connect across their community to share experiences and offer one another a helping hand. Because as an African proverb states “it takes a village to raise a child”.
Family: Stable and lasting
Every child belongs to a family and preferably grows up in that family. If children cannot grow up with their family of origin, we support them to bond and form lifelong ties with their alternative family. We make sure that brothers and sisters can remain together. We maintain the best possible relationship between the child and the family of origin.
We focus on children without adequate parental care
We focus our efforts on our target group: children without parental care or at risk of losing it, who are living in vulnerable circumstances. Many children are living in situations where they are well cared for and experience little or no vulnerability. Unfortunately, this is not the reality for many others. It is those children who are living in vulnerable care situations who we aim to reach; they are our target group. When identifying which groups of children are within our target group, we look at three key factors of their care situation: the presence of a caregiver, the capacity of the caregiver and the stability of care.
SOS Children’s Villages as a hub for alternative care and family strengthening
We commit to a long-term presence and to locally adapted services wherever we work. The SOS Children’s Villages is a child care and protection programme, which promotes the availability and quality of a range of alternative care options and family strengthening. An SOS Children’s Villages functions as a hub of competence, resources and innovation. It enables us to best respond to the situation of our target group and acts as a catalyst for wider development. It is an open space from where we promote care and protection in the community and where children, families and partners, such as a community-based organisation, receive support to become strong and vibrant.
We find the best care option for every child through strong gate-keeping
We commit to identify the most suitable care option for every child, because we want children to grow up in the care setting that is in their best interests. The family of origin is the best place for a child to grow up, as long as this family is willing and able to offer quality care. We only offer alternative care in situations where the family of origin is no longer the most suitable care option for the child.
We create a safe environment for children
We commit to creating a safe environment for children in our programmes at all times by implementing child safeguarding measures and procedures in line with international standards and best practice. We also support our partners to do the same. We listen to children on what child safety and a safe environment means for them in their day-to-day lives with their families, peers, caregivers, and communities. We take children’s views seriously and consider their inputs when planning and implementing child safeguarding measures.