Key Areas of Focus: Family Strengthening, Family Preservation, Prevention of Institutionalization, Advocacy, Policy Reform
Background: SOS Children’s Villages is an independent, non-governmental international development organization which has been working to meet the needs and protect the interests and rights of children since 1949. It was founded by Hermann Gmeiner in Imst, Austria. SOS Children’s Villages began to operate in Ukraine in 2003. Since then SOS Ukraine has been implementing comprehensive programs to support families and protect children’s rights in Kyiv city, Kyiv region, Luhansk and in Luhansk region of Ukraine. Their activity is devoted to strengthening families, promoting child well-being and developing local communities with the view of avoiding the placement of children into orphanages. SOS also works to change policies and practices to ensure the rights of the child in Ukraine.
What They Do: SOS Ukraine's core programs include:
- Family Strengthening: aimed at working with families in difficult circumstances in order to overcome crisis and prevent the loss of children. They support families, develop their ability to protect and care for their children, and also strengthen the social system of protection of needy children and their families.
- SOS families and foster families: for those children without the care of biological family, SOS provides sustainable and high-quality care for children who are unable to stay in their families, as well as those children for whom the SOS and foster families are the best solution.
- Social-legal (advocacy): aimed at improving the general conditions and protecting the rights of children from their target group by making changes and improving policies and practices in the best interests of children. They professionally help families, communities, and the state ensure the right of every child to live and be raised in a supportive family environment.
Where They Work: Ukraine