H.M Drottningens inledande ord vid besöket på SOS barnbyars huvudkontor

Mexico City, Mexiko

(Det talade ordet gäller)

Your Majesty,
Children in the village,
Ladies and gentlemen,

Thank you for the warm welcome!

It is wonderful to be here. Over the years I have had the privilege of visiting Children’s villages in various countries, and you are truly making a significant difference for vulnerable children.

Many of the children under your care have lost their guardians or for various reasons cannot stay with their families of origin. Before coming here, they have often lived unprotected, without education, health care or even worse – without an adult to turn to. In 1999, I founded the World Childhood Foundation to protect children from violence and sexual abuse. I know that children without parental care are especially at risk, and I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for children to have access to the love and care of adults.

You also facilitate long-term solutions, such as placing children with foster families, and in some cases adoption, for those who, for various reasons, cannot live with their biological parents due to violence, illness, death, or displacement.

Equally noteworthy is your preventive work with family-strengthening programs. By reaching out early to vulnerable children and families, you help them make long-term changes in their lives. The importance of uniting families and ensuring that children are not separated from their parents unless it is necessary, cannot be overstated. Here, your support for re-integrating children and adolescents with their families of origin when it is possible, is very important.

To have a real impact and create a lasting change, partnerships are important. SOS Children’s villages is collaborating with public institutions and community organizations to address the many causes for why children find themselves in a vulnerable situation. This way you ensure that children are not sent into the workforce unprepared, families are not torn apart, and children do not end up in the streets.

In recent years, femicides in Mexico have increased, leaving thousands of children without a mother, sister, or a close relative. I had the privilege of meeting Ms. Malú García Andrade just an hour ago. She received the Swedish government’s human rights award 2023 for her work against enforced disappearances and femicides. Ms. García Andrade passionately spoke about her lifelong dedication to helping families and victims – a true role model for us all!

Por último, quiero extender mi sincera gratitud a SOS Aldeas Infantiles y al SIPINNA por organizar esta visita y trabajar por los derechos de la infancia en México. Les deseo la mejor de las suertes en sus continuos esfuerzos.

También quiero expresar mi más sincero agradecimiento a todos los niños y niñas aquí presentes. Su presencia brinda una alegría especial a esta reunión, y sus voces son importantes. Nunca pierdan la fe en ustedes mismos. Ustedes son el futuro de México y del mundo.

Finally, I extend my sincere gratitude to SOS Children's Villages and the National System for the Rights of Children and Adolescents for organizing this visit and strengthening children's rights in Mexico. I wish you the best of luck in your ongoing efforts.

I also want to express a heartfelt thank you to all children here today. Your presence adds a special joy to this gathering, and your voices are important. Never lose faith in yourselves. You are the future of Mexico and of the world!

Thank you! – Gracias!