SOS Children's Village Zanzibar

The SOS Children's Village Zanzibar is located within 7 kilometres of the harbour town of Zanzibar.

Besides the 11 family houses, there is the village director's house, an aunt's house (SOS aunts care for SOS children in the absence of SOS mothers) and an administration and service area. The SOS Kindergarten went into operation in 1995, and comprises four group rooms, a playground and several additional rooms.

The SOS Kindergarten applies the "Jolly Phonics" method in its teaching. It has capacity for approximately 150 children from the SOS Children's Village and its neighbouring community.

Due to the great demand for kindergarten places and the high quality of the child care being offered there, the kindergarten works in two shifts. The children being cared for are between the ages of 4 ½ and 6 ½.

When youths are about 15 years of age, they move out of the SOS Children's Village and into one of the two SOS Youth Facilities. The older boys in the SOS Children's Village live in temporarily rented houses until a suitable plot of land is made available for the construction of the new youth facility.

Moving into the SOS Youth Facility involves having a great deal of responsibility for themselves, as they are being looked after by only one care giver, and this is an important step towards their independence. The SOS mothers, the village director and a psychologist prepare them carefully for this step. It is presumed that youths will live at the youth house for about four years, though those attending university can stay longer.

In 1993, an SOS Hermann Gmeiner Primary and Secondary School was added to SOS Children's Village Zanzibar, which has 28 classes. A total of 800 children are being taught by some 40 teachers at the SOS Hermann Gmeiner School at the moment. SOS Hermann Gmeiner School graduates always achieve good total scores in the national "O" Level exams.

In order to offer the local population better medical care, in 1998 the SOS Medical Centre was officially opened. About 160 patients are assisted in three examination rooms every month. A Mother and Child Clinic and a Gynaecological Clinic are planned to be constructed to complement the SOS Medical Centre. Through time, the SOS Children's Village facilities in Tanzania have developed into a true community centre and are therefore optimally integrated into their environment.