Dear Members of the SOS Children’s Villages Family Worldwide,
Further to the Chairperson’s Global Message, we are pleased to confirm that, with the indispensable assistance of our support team and team of investigators, we are continuing to progress our work under the three pillars of the ISC’s mandate as entrusted by the International Senate of SOS Children’s Villages.
Under the first pillar, the ISC team has comprehensively evaluated the child and asset safeguarding policies of the Federation for their compliance with international standards and best practices. The ISC has also advanced the second pillar of its mandate mapping, prioritizing and commencing investigations of allegations arising from the Wiersholm and ICSR reports as well as new allegations that have been referred to the ISC prioritizing the most serious allegations including child abuse, sexual exploitation and abuse, economic misconduct, misuse or misappropriation of funds and failures of all kinds (whether child safeguarding, asset safeguarding or governance failings) at all levels of the Federation (whether at the international, regional or national level). Finally, under the third pillar, the ISC has identified key areas for improvement to ensure more efficient, effective and humane prevention, response and accountability mechanisms for the Federation as a whole. To facilitate this simultaneous progress on all aspects of its mandate, the ISC team has undertaken extensive communications with stakeholders at all levels of the Federation including the Member Associations of the priority countries.
The ISC submitted its interim report to the International Senate and the Executive Board on 30 June 2022 setting out the results of its evaluations, describing the progress in its investigations, and putting forth nine concrete recommendations. The ISC acknowledges the joint efforts of the President and Chief Executive Officer to prepare and share an executive summary of the ISC’s interim report with all Member Associations. The ISC welcomes their transparency and assessment that the ISC “is tackling its mandate thoroughly and with great energy”.
While much of the ISC’s interim report is focused on the work that remains to be done to bring SOS CV into compliance with international standards and best practices, the ISC has not lost sight of the work that has been done and is being done throughout the entire Federation to address the gaps and strengthen SOS CV’s child and asset safeguarding systems. All members of the SOS CV Family at all levels of the Federation must continue their efforts to ensure that the children under SOS CV’s care are aware of their rights; can advocate for their needs; have access to recourse for their grievances; can report any abuse, failings or other wrongdoing; and have all the necessary support when they do.
To further our work, the ISC welcomes reports from victims, survivors, witnesses and whistleblowers related to our mandate and terms of reference . The ISC invites any person with an allegation or concern arising from the work of SOS CV to visit our dedicated “Report an Allegation” page on this website. Please read the information on that page carefully including the steps for making a report to the ISC. The ISC will protect the confidentiality and security of any information it receives and will protect the identity of all those who cooperate with the ISC. If you have any questions about the ISC or its mandate, please send an email to contact@independentSC.org or visit the “Contact Us” page on this website.
The ISC respects the SOS CV’s noble mission to provide “a loving home for every child” and applauds the sense of calling and commitment that most SOS CV caregivers and members of the SOS CV family around the world bring to their work every day to make that promise a reality for the children and youth under SOS CV’s care. The ISC counts on your continued cooperation to achieve our shared objectives of strengthening child and asset safeguarding; promoting justice for victims and survivors; and seeking meaningful accountability for those deemed responsible for any abuse, failings or other wrongdoing.
Justice Willy Mutunga (Chairperson)
Justice Gita Mittal (Commissioner)
Mona Ali Khalil (Commissioner)