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Dar es Salaam

"Jamhuri ya Muungano wa Tanzania" (The United Republic of Tanzania) is currently home to four SOS Children’s Villages. The organisation has been active in Tanzania since the former president of Zanzibar, Ali Hassan Mwinyi, approached Hermann Gmeiner in 1984, requesting that an SOS Children’s Village should be built in his country. In 1991, the first children were able to move into their new families.

Children playing together outside their home (photo: SOS archives)

SOS Children’s Villages began its work in Dar es Salaam in 2007. Today, a fundamental part of our work here is constituted by our family strengthening programme. The SOS Social Centre focuses on alleviating hardship in the local community by providing a number of services. We ensure that children have access to basic educational, nutritional and health services. We work with parents to help them improve their situation, for example by providing guidance on income-generating activities and parental skills. We also work closely with local authorities and community leaders in order to strengthen the support networks available to vulnerable children and their families. Around 600 children and their adult caregivers benefit from the social centre.

For children from the region who are no longer able to live with their parents, 13 SOS families can provide a loving home for up to 130 children. In each family, the children live with their brothers and sisters, affectionately cared for by their SOS mother.

The children attend the SOS Kindergarten together with children from the neighbourhood, which ensures that they are integrated into the local community from a young age.