SOS Children's Villages started working in Germany in the mid-1950s, after the foundation of "SOS-Kinderdorf e.V." in Munich. The SOS Children's Villages concept aroused great interest in Germany; the number of members and friends rapidly increased, and in subsequent years our organisation was able to expand its support to reach children, young people and families in nearly 40 locations around the country.
The SOS Children's Village Sauerland was erected on the outskirts of Lüdenscheidt (approx. 80,000 inhabitants) , north of the city centre and officially opened in 1963. The surrounding landscape is hilly and quite wooded, several small lakes and rivers are nearby. Around 50 children are living in the seven family houses of the SOS Children's Village Sauerland, which also comprises a youth centre, a playground and a sports ground.
In 1984 the SOS Children's Village Sauerland was complemented with three educational communities for eighteen children and youth in need of temporary external accommodation due to grave conflicts within their natural families. These communities offer short, medium or long term care in combination with support in school and vocational affairs as well as educational and therapeutic care. In 1995 an additional day care centre was established for twenty children from three and eleven years from the neighbourhood.