SOS Children's Village

The SOS Children's Village in Ho Chi Minh City is part of an international network to help orphans and disadvantaged children. Each child who comes to the village becomes part of a permanent home and family.

The first SOS Children's Village was founded in 1949 by Dr. Hermann Gmeiner for children left without parents after WWII. By 1959, it has grown to an organization of ten villages spread across Europe. Today, there are 423 SOS Children's Villages around the world.

There are approximately 12 to 20 houses in each Village. Each household has a "mother" and 8 to 10 children who become brothers and sisters. The Village offers the children the opportunity to be a part of a family. The children participate in normal activities such as going to school and doing chores when they are home.

I was not familiar with the SOS Children's Villages until I came to Vietnam. I have always had this image of an orphanage in my head that was dark and grey. I was happily surprised during this visit to see a very large place filled with trees, flowers and grass for children to play. It is a very happy place indeed.

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