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Background

Swaziland still has a high prevalence of HIV and AIDS which has lowered the life expectancy to 48.9 years and has led to a lot of children losing parental care, in addition, a lot of children in Swaziland are at risk of losing parental care because caregivers lack capacity of commitment to adequately care for them due to various reasons, child headed households, elderly headed households, unemployed parents, disabled parents, abused and many more. The Swaziland Demographic and Health Survey (SDHS) reveals that 23 percent of children are orphaned and that 31 percent of children are considered vulnerable. Specifically, there are about 80,000 orphans, and 130,000 orphans and vulnerable children in Swaziland. The National Social Development Policy specifies that traditional childcare arrangements have largely broken down, so the basic needs of orphans and vulnerable children are frequently not met. HIV and AIDS, together with social problems such as poverty and substance abuse, are contributing to the abandonment, neglect and abuse of children.

SOS Children’s Villages helps the most vulnerable children without and those at risk of losing parental care. The organisation strives towards taking children and youth in its care through the journey of becoming well informed, healthy, and self-reliant. This is implemented through the long-term family-like residential care of orphaned and abandoned children and through the family-strengthening programme that reaches children in their families of origin. The family strengthening programme focuses on the reasons that cause family separation. The vision of the organisation is to ensure that every child belongs to a family and grows with love, respect and security. SOS Children’s Villages has since challenged itself to strengthen its impact and reach more children through innovative alternative care through the new 2030 strategy that is being implemented from 2017.  The organisation will now include focus on other options of alternative care like foster care, kinship care and other context-relevant alternative care options.  The 2030 strategy also focuses on strengthening the support provided to families of origin in the communities. With the continued dwindling global funding resources SOS Children’s Villages needs to diversify and innovate its fundraising efforts, in order to effectively carry its mandate. Hence the drive to have every citizen contribute at least; - ONE LILANGENI to SOS Children’s Villages.


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