SOS Children's Village Monaragala

SOS sponsored children running through a field in the SOS Village in Monaragala, Sri LankaIn January 1999, the site for the fifth SOS Children's Village of Sri Lanka was donated to SOS Children's Villages by the government of the country. On 10 July, the foundation stone was laid and construction started in August. By November 2000, five family houses had been completed and the first mothers and children moved into the new SOS Children's Village. The site of the SOS Children's Village is within the city limits of Monaragala City. Monaragala district is in the Southeast of the country. It is a large district, which consists of two zones, the wet and the dry zone. The SOS Children's Village is in the wet zone, where the climate is temperate. The main occupation of the people is agriculture. However, the Monaragala urban area is developing very fast.

The SOS Children's Village consists of twelve family houses, a community centre and the necessary administrative buildings. All the family houses have three storeys and face the mountain range at the back of the SOS Children's Village. There is an SOS Kindergarten, where up to 120 children both from the SOS Children's Village and from the local community can be taught in four group rooms. The SOS Social Centre provides counselling to the local population. It also offers crafts classes and basic medical treatment and coordinates the local family strengthening programmes.

The SOS Youth Facility consists of three youth houses, the youth leader's house and a community building. Young people usually move from the SOS Children's Village to an SOS Youth Facility when they start a vocational training course or go on to higher education. With the support of qualified youth workers, the young people develop realistic perspectives for their future, learn to shoulder responsibility and increasingly make their own decisions. They are encouraged to develop team spirit and build up contacts with relatives and friends, as well as with the relevant authorities and potential employers.

At Monaragala, there is also an SOS Vocational Training Centre, where special training programmes for young people are held. The centre consists of several classrooms, a library and a multi-purpose hall. It was opened in February 2006 and has a capacity of 150 trainees.