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

Situated near the Argentinian border, on the River Paraguay, Asunción is the country’s capital and economic centre. With 525,000 inhabitants in the city itself, and 3 million in the metropolitan area, it is home to almost half of the Paraguayan population. But Asunción is a divided city where much of the infrastructure is deteriorated and insufficient to meet people’s needs. In the Bañados area, unpaved roads and unsafe housing are prone to flooding and do not provide adequate living conditions for children.

Since 1982, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Asunción.

Of the population cannot read or write


In Paraguay, the illiteracy rate is 5% – it stands at 3% in urban areas but is much higher in the countryside, where it is over 9%. And at 6%, women are more often illiterate than men (5%). Foundational reading and numeracy skills are essential for full social and economic participation. Yet, many of those rural residents are migrating to Asunción in search of work, where the work opportunities are informal in nature. This means longer working hours and less security, and it can have detrimental effects on family stability and the well-being of children.

Of workers work in the informal sector

Informal employment

The majority of the families in these impoverished urban areas are unable to find official work – many live off selling merchandise or homemade food on the streets, or collecting and selling rubbish. In fact, 61% of the Paraguayan workforce does not hold a formal job. Unable to break through the cycle of poverty, they do not have social security and do not contribute to any retirement pension. The majority of informal workers are in precarious employment – it is not a choice but rather a result of the lack of opportunities in the formal sector.

Your support makes a difference for children in Asunción

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.
Were able to stay together
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Brothers playing together on the playground. Children who grow up in our care form bonds that often last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Paraguay).

How your support helps in Asunción

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.
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.