(11 June 2007) – SOS Children's Villages was chosen to receive the OPEC Fund Award for International Development and an endowment of 100,000 USD in recognition of its commitment to the welfare of children around the world and its valuable contributions in promoting worldwide development. The award ceremony will take place on 13 June in Pörtschach, Carinthia, during the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) annual Ministerial Council meeting.
SOS Children's Villages President Helmut Kutin expressed his appreciation for the recognition of the work done on behalf of children in need. "We accept this award on behalf of the children, mothers and co-workers of SOS Children's Villages. This is truly a recognition of the hard work our people have done in 132 countries over the past 58 years to improve the lives of children in the developing world. This award is an honour shared by the entire SOS Children's Villages organisation." President Kutin expressed determination to work closely with the OFID on future development projects where they are needed most.
Suleiman J. Al-Herbish, Director General of OFID, praised SOS Children's Villages' commitment to children's rights and interests. "We recognise the valuable work you do and your essential contribution in shaping the future of youth," noted Al-Herbish. "SOS Children's Villages has been chosen in recognition of its deep commitment to the welfare of children all over the world."
SOS Children's Villages operates in ten countries in the Middle East and North Africa, and has inaugurated the new SOS Children's Villages Arab Fund, which is designed to raise funds exclusively for projects in the Arab world. These include family strengthening programmes, education and advocacy activities in the region. The organisation has children's villages in four OPEC countries. The award ceremony will take place on 13 June at approximately 12:30 at the Parkhotel in Pörtschach, Carinthia, during the OFID's annual Ministerial Council meeting.
Following the ceremony (at approximately 13:30), there will be a press conference between President Kutin and OFID Ministerial Council Chairman Dr. Ibrahim Al-Assaf, Minister of Finance of Saudi Arabia.
SOS Children's Villages is a non-governmental and non-denominational organisation providing care for orphaned, abandoned and destitute children in 132 countries and territories. Some 65,000 children are cared for at 457 SOS Children's Villages and 358 SOS Youth Facilities. In addition, the organisation provides vulnerable families with material, psychosocial and educational support. More than 135,000 children and youths attend SOS Schools, SOS Kindergartens and SOS Vocational Training Centres, while more than one million people, mainly children and women, benefit from SOS Medical and Social Centres and SOS Emergency Relief Programmes. SOS-Kinderdorf International is the umbrella organisation of all worldwide SOS Children's Villages.
The OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) is an intergovernmental development finance institution established in 1976 by the member states of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. It aims to promote cooperation between OPEC member countries and other developing countries in order to help poorer, low-income countries in pursuit of their social and economic advancement.
For more information on SOS Children's Villages please contact: Hugh Linnehan, Communications Officer - Tel: +43-5123 310 5107, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on the OPEC Fund for International Development, please contact: OFID - Tel: +43-1-515-64-0, Fax: +43-1-515-92-38, Email: email@example.com