Our roots

Who we are

Hermann Gmeiner founded SOS Children’s Villages' Hermann Gmeiner Academy in 1981 to provide a common place of encounter and education for the staff of SOS Children’s Villages.

The Hermann Gmeiner Academy is a place for the exchange of expert knowledge beyond all cultural, religious, political and hierarchical structures.

The Hermann Gmeiner Academy works according to the directives of its own board of directors and is a member of the umbrella organisation of SOS-Kinderdorf International.


Our mission

We offer

As a house of education we create the room and the atmosphere for meeting other people, for the exchange of experience and for reflection, and give people the opportunity to have a break from everyday life. We take care of our guests and want them to feel at home in our house. Our international cuisine, the quiet atmosphere and the infrastructure of our house make our guests enjoy their stay even more. 
We document the development of SOS Children’s Villages from its very roots to its present work and make it available to a broad public.

In our own series of events, we deal with current social issues and discuss topical matters that are relevant to SOS Children's Villages.

Another main focus of our work is to present SOS Children’s Villages as an organisation which unites different peoples. In this context, we attach particular importance to social awareness in terms of peace and understanding.

We work on and publish content-based topics according to academic criteria.

We connect

As a platform, we provide scope for the international exchange of expert knowledge. We ensure that the results of this can be accessed by our colleagues at SOS Children's Villages and any members of the public that are interested.

We promote and support the cooperation of SOS Children’s Villages with other organisations.

We move

Our events bring people together.
Through the contents and the type of encounter, we move the participants in the events. We are open and ourselves to be moved and touched by lively, interesting and powerful contributions.


Our values


We stand for:

  • an acknowledging and open encounter based on respect
  • solidarity and loyalty
  • a protected framework for open exchange



We are responsible for:

  • leaving room for reflection to carefully accomplish our mission
  • carefully dealing with our resources
  • being able to criticize



Over the years we have succeeded in:

  • being a constant partner for our clients and customers
  • offering our guests a place of encounter, exchange and regeneration



We have the courage to:

  • face encounters full of challenges and new impulses
  • admit mistakes and to learn from them
  • get involved in change and innovation


Our vision

Each child grows up in a family: loved, respected and protected.

Through our commitment to the rights of the child we have contributed to changing the world in such a way that all children have their place.