August 2 2011

New Chevrolet Captiva to improve children's lives in Lapland

02/08/2011 - Christmas has come five months early to a very special family in Lapland: The SOS Children’s Village Ylitornio in Finland has received the 50th of 100 birthday presents which Chevrolet is giving to SOS Children's Villages in Europe, Uzbekistan, South Africa, Lesotho and Israel.

The new Chevrolet
The new Chevrolet for SOS Children's Villages Ylitornio - Photo: Chevrolet

Ylitornio is the most northerly SOS Children's Village in the world – 850 km north of Helsinki - and consists of six SOS family houses plus a community house where the children can study and pursue leisure activities, as well as an after school support program – all of which requires logistical support from the Chevrolet Captiva.

The new car will be used in and around Ylitornio as a mobile lifeline for social workers, child psychologists and volunteers in the years to come. It provides invaluable mobility in an area on the Arctic Circle where temperatures fall as low as -47.5°C (54°F) and snow is on the ground for 183 days a year.

Go anywhere lifeline

"Northern Lapland might be famous for being Santa's home, but it's also one of the most extreme places on earth to live as there is little or no access to public transportation, so we appreciate the car's off-road capabilities. This car is going to be great for excursions with the children," said Teemu Rossi, Assistant Manager of the SOS Children's Village Ylitornio.

With Lapland's most famous white-bearded resident busy preparing for Christmas, Jussi Örn, Sales Manager for Chevrolet Finland stepped in to hand over the keys to the new Chevrolet Captiva 2.2 liter LT in Olympic White to Teemu at a Chevrolet dealership in Rovaniemi.

Flexibility required

Handing over the car
Jussi Örn, Chevrolet, hands over the car to Teemu Rossi, SOS Children's Village Ylitornio - Photo: Chevrolet

"With the village having such a demanding and unpredictable schedule requiring flexibility to transport the children, a car is fundamental to our work”, Rossi adds, “thanks to the five-or-seven-seat versatility and all-wheel drive capabilities of the Captiva we can safely reach any destination - even in the depths of winter.

The gift of a Captiva also means we can dispense with a car we have been leasing and use the money we save on education programmes for the children’s village."

European partnership announced in 2010

The European partnership between SOS Children's Villages and Chevrolet Europe was announced on the eve of the 2010 Paris Motor Show on September 29 by Wayne Brannon, President and Managing Director of Chevrolet Europe and Richard Pichler, Secretary General of SOS Children's Villages International. The initiative will increase the mobility of the children and their SOS parents as well as the ability of the social workers who run the SOS Family Strengthening Programmes to visit disadvantaged families in the communities.

"Louis Chevrolet's ‘let nothing stop you' spirit of optimism and can-do attitude are attributes we share with SOS Children’s Villages. There can be no greater example of this than the SOS mothers and childcare teams in Finland who are working in the most northern extremities of the world," said Wayne Brannon, President of Chevrolet Europe.

Car improves daily lives on the Arctic Circle

"We hope that the Captiva can improve the daily lives of the kids and their SOS mothers – even on the edge of the Arctic Circle. We are proud to support an independent organisation of the scope, dedication and commitment that SOS Children’s Villages demonstrates every day of the year."

Chevrolet will provide 20 Spark city cars, 20 Aveo small cars, 20 Cruze compact cars, 20 Orlando 7-seaters and 20 Captiva 7-seat SUVs to SOS Children's Villages. The Chevrolets have been handed over at birthday parties all over Europe since February 22 of this year, and this will continue until the 100th car is donated on November 3, 2011 – the date when Louis Chevrolet and William Durant founded the company in Detroit, 100 years ago.

Richard Pichler: Vehicles will be greatly appreciated

"From the small city car to the seven-seaters, the Chevrolet vehicles will be highly appreciated for all different kinds of usages," said Richard Pichler, Secretary General of SOS Children's Villages International. "The SOS mothers need to be mobile for the same reasons other parents do. They manage all the same challenges of running a large household. Very often, the communities are remote and hard to access by public transportation. The mobility of all our co-workers is really crucial for us to be able to support children," Pichler explained.

About Chevrolet

Chevrolet is General Motors' largest global brand with annual sales of about 4 million vehicles in more than 130 countries. It is the fourth biggest global car brand in terms of sales and also one of the fastest growing brands in the world. Chevrolet cars combine passion, bold design and practicality. They provide outstanding value for money. After re-launching the brand in Europe in 2005, Chevrolet more than doubled its sales to over 500,000 in 2008.

In 2010, Chevrolet grew its market share in Europe to 2.5 percent, selling 477,194 cars. Chevrolet has a network of more than 2,700 dealers and service points in Europe. The Chevrolet line-up includes the Spark city car, the small Aveo, the compact four-door Cruze, the Captiva SUV and the legendary Corvette sports car. In 2011, Chevrolet is launching seven new cars: the all-new Orlando family van, the new Captiva SUV, the Corvette Grand Sport Coupé, the all-new five-door and four-door Aveo, the five-door Cruze, the Camaro coupé and convertible and the award-winning extended-range Volt electric car.

Chevrolet's biggest markets in Europe are Russia, Italy, Germany, Spain, France and Turkey. Established in the U.S. by Swiss émigré Louis Chevrolet in 1911, the brand is celebrating its centenary in 2011. More information on Chevrolet can be found at or