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Geo International Situational Awareness System for SOS Children's Villages

Situational Awareness System (SAS) for SOS Children’s Villages is a project funded by the European Space Agency (ESA) to establish a satellite-based system allowing timely access to geospatial information.

Within the project the system provides information products to support SOS Children’s Villages International in their site development, monitoring, controlling and management as well as to assist fundraising activities and to increase resource efficiency.

SOS Children’s Villages is an international non-governmental social development organisation that makes child care, education, and health care available to children and their families directly, and helps to improve policies and practices of the state. The European Space Agency is Europe’s gateway to space. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.

SAS is developed and operated by GeoVille Group. GeoVille Group is a private sector enterprise specialised in satellite Earth Observation and derived geo-information products and services. Offices are located in Austria and Luxembourg.

The latest generation of very high resolution satellite data will be applied to serve situational awareness requirements of SOS Children’s Villages International. A geographic information system approach will allow further analysis, derivation and provision of sector specific information products.

The situational awareness system will focus on the following key target areas:
1. Timely identification of suitable sites for construction
2. Operational monitoring of construction progress
3. Community development monitoring around SOS children’s villages4. Delivery of situational awareness information in the aftermath of crises

The products will be provided by GeoVille Group in the form of digital maps and reports and easily accessible over the Internet and mobile devices for SOS Children’s Villages staff in headquarters and in the field. “GeoVille Group will merge satellite data with cutting edge technology for out of Europe timely children’s security monitoring”, said Christian Schleicher, SAS Project Leader.

“SOS Children’s Villages is active in 133 countries. It works with disadvantaged families and their communities in order to prevent crises that can lead to family separation. Around 80.0000 children who have lost parental care are provided with a caring, loving, and secure family environment. Each year several new locations for SOS Children’s Village programmes are under development. With the help of SAS and satellites we will be able to make more informed decisions in site selection and management. Most importantly satellite derived information will assist to react more quickly in the aftermath of natural hazards”, explained Michael Spuller, Construction Commission Director.

“We are pleased to be working with SOS Children’s Villages and have the opportunity to demonstrate that the European Space Agency and European earth observation satellites can bring useful and needed information to support their important work in helping children and developing communities around the world”, said Volker Liebig, Director of ESA Earth Observation Programmes.