SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS children’s Villages in Nepal).

Gandaki is located near the city of Pokhara, in central Nepal. About 510,000 people live in the city, making it the second largest city in Nepal after the capital Kathmandu. Pokhara is considered the tourism capital of the country and is located at the foot of the Himalayas. However, poverty is still widespread, with 10% of the people in the province living in poverty. This leads to food insecurity for the population, and children in particular are at great risk. In addition, girls are still exposed to child marriage.

Since 1979, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Gandaki.

Of girls are forced into marriage

Child marriage

Nepal has the 16th highest rate of child marriages in the world. This means that 40% of women in Nepal were married before the age of 18. Child marriage is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the emotional damage a child suffers from a forced union is profound. There is also an increased risk of child pregnancy and domestic violence. In the province of Gandaki specifically, 35% of girls were married as a child. The national target to end child marriage by 2030 will require a major push from the government.

Of children are underweight in Gandaki

Suffering from hunger

Although Nepal has been recognized as a leader in decreasing malnutrition, food insecurity is still widespread in Nepal. Many people suffer from acute hunger. In Gandaki especially, parents struggle to provide enough nutritious food for their children. For this reason, 14% of the children are underweight. To be more specific, 22% of children in Gandaki experience stunting (low height for age), a result from undernutrition. Furthermore, 8% of children experience wasting (low weight for height), which occurs when a child has not had food of adequate quality and quantity.

Your support makes a difference for children in Gandaki

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Adults and children
Are supported in the community
Learn at our kindergartens and schools
Children and young people
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Siblings teaching their brother how to ride a bicycle. They grow up with each other, and often form bonds that last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages in Nepal).

How your support helps in Gandaki

Strengthening families and communities
When parents face hardships, they can sometimes struggle to give children the care they need. SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities. Each family needs different support so that they can stay together. This support can include workshops on parenting and children’s rights. We also run trainings so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
Providing quality education
SOS Children’s Villages ensures that children and young people have access to high-quality education. We help them learn and develop in a safe and supportive environment. We train teachers on children’s rights and child-centered learning, so that each child can get the most out of their education. Young children spend time playing and learning at kindergarten. This prepares them for primary school.
Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Here the children can build safe and lasting relationships. All the children in our care have access to education and healthcare. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.