Albania

Learn about sponsoring a child in Albania

You can sponsor a child at the SOS Children's Villages at Tirana. Alternatively you could make a donation or sponsor the village itself in order to support programmes like that below.

SOS child in Albania

Sponsor SOS Children's Village Tirana, Albania

A Family Programme started in January 2006 supporting 140 vulnerable children and their families in the local community near SOS Children’s Village Tirana. Priority is given to children at greatest risk - single-parent families, families with a large number of children and the Roma community. The overall aim of the project is to prevent abandonment and to help children live in a healthy family environment where their rights are respected. Special focus was placed on helping parents to address the concerns that they faced. This included counselling and advice on practical issues as well as training in child development.

As a result, 60% of children have done better at school and there is less malnutrition. Some parents have found permanent jobs and some families are receiving the financial support from the state that they need. In addition, there are better relationships between parents and children and more family involvement in school activities.

Ana and her parents are just one such family which has benefited from SOS Children’s Family Strengthening Programme in Tirana. Their problems began when Ana’s father had an accident, which left him with some mental and physical disabilities. He wasn’t able to hold down a job and he began to take his frustrations out on Anna. She became withdrawn and tried to take her own life after her father had begun to abuse her.

"I was angry. I fought with my parents. Never paid any attention to what they were saying. I was so angry at them. I didn't do anything around the house. I never helped out with chores. I was angry at school too. The few children I knew from school felt more like acquaintances rather than friends. I never joined any school club or after school activity. I was just angry all the time," said twelve-year-old Ana. “I tried to shut everyone one out so I could keep my family a secret”.

Ana and her parents were supported by the SOS Children Family Programme. To begin with Ana refused to participate and cooperate. Gradually she became more optimistic and began to take more part in school activities. Her parents became more involved in her schooling and her relationship with her parents gradually improved.

"After SOS Children came into my life, I started to lose my anger. I see things more positively now. I smile and I look forward to every day. I don't fight with my parents as much. I now feel that they give me the attention and love which I missed. I have friends. I take part in school events. I feel like a different person. SOS Children restored my faith in my parents and in myself," said Ana.

SOS Children in AlbaniaThe work is far from over. There is still much to be done to increase Ana's trust in people, especially in her father. But what she wrote about the way she used to feel and how she feels now, shows that SOS Children can and does make a difference.

SOS Children Albania has also been a member of the Albanian Coalition for Children with HIV/AIDS since 2005. The coalition includes some of the major child-rights organizations in the country and has organised campaigns under the motto “A better life for children with HIV/AIDS.” SOS Children in Albania works with the Parliamentary Commission for Labour, Social Affairs and Health to highlight the issues of children living with HIV/AIDS in Albania. SOS Children and the coalition monitor follow up what the government is doing to support children with HIV/AIDS.

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