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Partner of the Week: Lietuvos Vaiku Fondas

Posted in Partner of The Week on April 13, 2021

Lietuvos Vaiku Fondas (the Lithuanian Children’s Fund) is one of the oldest foundations in Lithuania, operating for over 30 years to provide social services, empowerment methodologies and methods, and social and financial education to vulnerable children. Since its establishment in 1988, they have worked to provide and support alternative forms of institutional childcare in Lithuania, co-founding 14 ‘family group’ homes across the country as well as founding the Roma Community Center with the Department of National Minorities in the Government of Lithuania.  

In addition to their work with Aflatoun, Lietuvos Vaiku Fondas runs multiple social and educational programmes for vulnerable children and communities. Their ‘Let’s Get to Know Lithuania’ project invites Roma children to a summer youth camp in Kaltanėnai, where they kayak, enjoy the Lithuanian countryside and are taken on a tour of Aukštaitija National Park. They also promote ‘productive learning’ methods and mediation programmes, working intensively with children from minority communities, as well as Career Education projects.  

Through these efforts and programmes, they hope to contribute to the wellbeing of children and families, initiative positive social change, and create a brighter future for Lithuanian children and society as a whole.   

Our Partnership

Since the beginning of their partnership with Aflatoun International in 2016, the Lithuanian Children’s Fund has made great strides towards spreading social and financial education across the country- now implementing the AflatotAflatoun, and Aflateen+15 curriculums. As part of a 2016 project with Trakai Education Center and the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences, they have translated and published Aflatoun textbooks for AflatotAflatoun, as well as other non-formal education guides. They have also worked alongisde organisations from 18 other countries to develop the delivery of Aflatoun programmes across Europe, and trained 10 Aflatoun coaches in Alytus in 2017.  

In 2017, the Aflatoun programme in Lithuania was evaluated by the Faculty of Pedagogy of Vilnius College, and regional coach Loreta Trakinskienė was invited to adapt the programme for local pre-school, primary education, and social work students. Following very positive student feedback, the Aflatoun programme continues to guide training at the College. 

Currently, 1,150 children across 6 city schools in Alytus participate in the Aflatoun program, and Lietuvos Vaiku Fondas is now working with Aflatoun International on the ‘Be My Friend Campaign’ 

The ‘Be My Friend’ Campaign 

The ‘Be My Friend’ Campaign is a national fundraising and social awareness campaign calling on support for children being raised in difficult conditions, to provide human contact, warmth, and support mechanisms. Whilst postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lithuanian Children’s Fund and partners will hold a live broadcast on LRyto TV for an awareness and benefit concert, featuring famous Lithuanian musicians, performers, and the talents of Lithuanian children. During this event, they will also present stories showcasing the benefits and success of Aflatoun programmes, illustrating how participants have saved money, electricity, water, relationships, produce savings boxes, utilising bank services, and implementing their rights to play, study, teamwork, and entrepreneurship.  

Anyone wishing to support the “Be My Friend” campaign, visit their website. 

“We hope for the support for the fundraising campaign “Be my friend”. [Through this], more of our children will have Friends and Hope, and will be happy.” — A Lithuanian Children’s Fund Employee