SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Ethiopia).

SOS Children’s Village Gode is located in the Somali province in the southeastern part of Ethiopia. Around five million people live here. Many of these families have been displaced by political unrest or natural disasters. The climate here is unforgiving: dry periods tend to be long and particularly severe. If harvests are destroyed, this leads to crisis for families who survive off small plots of land. In general, life for children is improving in Ethiopia, but the Somali region and the city of Gode still have catching up to do. Around 36% of children live in poverty, and about 25% of the population cannot afford nutritious food. As a result, the under-five mortality rate in the region is the highest in the country.

Since 2004, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Gode.

Of the population lack access to safe drinking water

Lack of safe drinking water

In spite of great improvements, over 22% of the populations still lives in poverty. Poverty affects parents and children in many different ways. It may mean that families do not have safe living conditions: for example, 73% of the population lack access to safe drinking water. This is no surprise since as high as 57% practice open defecation, a practice that easily contaminates water sources, resulting in few possibilities for proper sanitation. Poverty can also mean high levels of malnutrition and limited access to healthcare. Pregnant women and young children are especially at risk.

Households were affected by the 2018 floods

Natural disasters

Somali region is an agricultural region that is often affected by natural disasters. The majority of families tend to small plots of land where they grow food. At the best of times, this is often not enough to feed the household. But when a natural disaster strikes, many families are left in dire straits. Natural disasters are increasing in number and in severity. The 2018 floods destroyed homes, farmland and schools. The floods also increased the risks of malaria and cholera spreading. This can lead to deaths due to the lack of medical care in the region.

Your support makes a difference for children in Gode

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Can stay together
Learn at our kindergartens and schools
Medical treatments
Were possible
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Taking part in a first aid workshop. Children and young people feel proud to learn about what to do if someone has a simple injury (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Ethiopia).

How your support helps in Gode

Strengthening families and communities
When parents face hardships, they can sometimes struggle to give children the care they need. SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities. Each family needs different support so that they can stay together. This support can include workshops on parenting and children’s rights. We also run trainings so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
Providing quality education
SOS Children’s Villages ensures that children and young people have access to high-quality education. We help them learn and develop in a safe and supportive environment. We train teachers on children’s rights and child-centered learning, so that each child can get the most out of their education. Young children spend time playing and learning at kindergarten. This prepares them for primary school.
Providing medical care
In areas with limited health services, SOS Children’s Villages provides medical advice and assistance. We offer preventative measures such as medical check-ups and vaccination programmes. Most of the patients who approach us for medical help come from local families, who could otherwise not afford to receive treatment.
Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Here the children can build safe and lasting relationships. All the children in our care have access to education and healthcare. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.