Mwanza Region is located in the northern part of Tanzania just south of Lake Victoria. The SOS Children's Village in Mwanza will accommodate 120 children, while its modern Kindergarten hopes to enroll 90 children.
The SOS Children's Village has recruited twelve SOS-mothers and three assistants. They have completed their training and are ready to welcome the first children to the village.
SOS Children’s Villages' activities in Mwanza started in 2010 with the establishment of the Family Strengthening Program; an outreach program responding to the needs of children who are at risk of losing parental care.
Family Strengthening Program
In 2015, the family strengthening program in Mwanza supported 1,000 beneficiaries from 264 families. The majority (86%) of caregivers are single parents, mainly women. 10% (27) caregivers are men and 5 are sibling-headed families.
The aim of SOS Family Strengthening Program (FSP) is to ensure children’s access to essential services, support families to be self-reliant and strengthen community’s organizations to take a long-term responsibility for vulnerable children. The program is built on the following family strengthening model:
- Ensuring that children have access to essential services.
- Empowering children to participate in the protections of their rights.
- Supporting families to build their capacity to protect and care for their children with the aim to become self-reliant.
- Strengthening the community to respond to the needs of vulnerable children and their families.
- Building partnerships with individuals and organizations, sharing information and resources.
- Working towards strengthening government responses through advocacy.
SOS Children's Village Mwanza
Results in 2015
Families are empowered towards self-reliance through engagement in Village Savings and Lending Associations (VSLA), as well as business development and trainings on how to manage income at family level. The VSLAs have grown into community-based organisations (CBOs) and one is legally registered as a local NGO. These organisations support program implementation and are involved in program review meetings in order to match plans with the local community context.
160 families achieved stable income and are able to provide three meals a day, and 47 families have renovated their houses and hence improved their living conditions. The program has supported 643 children in education, including primary school, secondary school, vocational training and colleges. One boy is in his last year at University pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in human health and nutrition.
A remarkable success last year was the 20 caregivers who exited the family strengthening program due to attaining self-reliance in December 2015. These families have a total of 86 children who enjoy education, health and care support from their guardians.