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

N’zérékoré is a city in the southeast of Guinea, near the border to Liberia. It has a population of around 195.000 people and is an important trading centre for the surrounding areas. The city’s population has almost tripled since 1996, not least due to the influx of refugees from neighbouring Liberia, Sierra Leone and Côte d’Ivoire fleeing the civil wars in those countries. What makes the situation more difficult are the socio-economic conditions and the fragile political environment in the entire region.

Since 2001, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families, and advocating for their rights in N’zérékoré.

Years is the average life expectancy of people

Low life expectancy

Life expectancy is a way to measure the health of a population. The global average life expectancy is 72,7 years. With an average of 55 years, life expectancy in the region around N'zérékoré is by far the lowest of all regions in Guinea. There is also a big urban-rural gap. For example, the average person from Conakry lives for just over 65 years of age. Some of the leading causes of death in Guinea are lower respiratory infections, malaria, diarrheal diseases.

Of children are involved in child labour

Children are forced to work

Even though Guinea has passed laws prohibiting child labour, it has made little effort to stop it completely. The laws passed do not meet international standards. For example, they do not include children working outside of formal employment. Some Guinean boys may be forced to work in gold and diamond mines, while girls are involved in domestic work and may be subject to sexual exploitation. Child labour can result in physical and mental harm. It can prevent children from attending school and receiving health care. This restricts their fundamental rights and threatens their futures.

Your support makes a difference for children in N’zérékoré

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.
Adults and children
Are supported in the community
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Children playing together. Siblings grow up together in families, and often form bonds that last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages in Guinea).

How your support helps in N’zérékoré

Strengthening vulnerable 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 training so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start their own businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
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.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.