SOS Children in Uruguay

Sponsorship sites in Uruguay

The Republic of Uruguay is one of the smallest countries in South America, bounded on the north by Brazil and on the west by Argentina, with the Atlantic Ocean to the east. The population of around 3.5 million, nearly 90 per cent of whom are of European descent, live mostly on the coast in urban areas. Migration from rural to urban areas has been the cause of many social and economic problems. Despite urbanization, the economy is still based largely on agriculture, specifically livestock raising which flourishes on the rolling plains of the countryside. Tourism is also increasingly important with the development of resort areas along the Atlantic coast east of Montevideo, the capital, chief port and economic centre. Uruguay was one of the first countries in South America where SOS Children's Villages were established with the building of the SOS Children's Village Montevideo on the edge of the city, about 2 km from Santiago Vazquez, in 1965. The village has thirteen family houses and two youth houses where the older children can live while taking their first guided steps to independence and completing their education or vocational training. At the SOS social centre which is part of the village, day care including a hot meal is provided for over 100 children from socially deprived families in the neighbourhood.

The charity established its first community in 1985 in Salto, about 10 km from the city of Salto in northwest Uruguay. The eleven family houses, which are home to 69 children and their SOS mothers, were all renovated and extended in 1999. Two youth houses have also been established, one for girls and one for boys, in Salto itself. A kindergarten provides pre-school education for 100 children from the community and the neighbourhood, while the older children attend local elementary and secondary schools. Fruit and vegetables are grown for the community's use by the older children who have also founded a production co-operative raising pigs and hens, selling to local supermarkets.

The charity's third and largest community in Uruguay is in Florida, a small town and well known dairy farming centre, about 100 km north of Montevideo. SOS Children's Florida community has fifteen family houses and a kindergarten for the youngest children. The older children attend the local schools in Florida which are easily reached by bus.

Local Contacts

SOS Children in Uruguay:
Asociación de Aldeas Infantiles SOS de Uruguay,
Guayabo 1586,
CP 11200 Montevideo,
Tel: +598/2/400 53 51

Uruguay Child Sponsorship

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