The Open Lithuania Foundations was the first non-governmental organization after the declaration of Lithuanian independence. On the 17th of December 1990, the first Government of the Republic of Lithuania approved the statutes of the Open Lithuania Foundations and its mission. The mission of the Foundation is to contribute to the open, democratic civil society. The Foundation operated until 2008.

In 2017, the activity of the Foundation was restored. It contributes to civil society, education, science, culture, law, free expression and independent media. It also aims to strengthen the protection of fundamental human rights in Lithuania and Europe, to reduce all forms of discrimination and to promote tolerance in society, to strengthen communities and NGOs and to contribute to their empowerment.

The Open Lithuania Foundation, 1990 – 2008

Restoration of the OLF, 2017

“Our main goal was to open Lithuania to Europe and Europe to Lithuania, to develop and consistently strengthen democracy in Lithuania. After all, historically we did not have a very deep tradition of democracy to build on. One of our most important tasks was to build a civil society that would encourage the Lithuanian people to be active and to be able to solve their own problems.” Prof. Irena Veisaitė, Founder of the Open Society Foundation

“The Foundation’s re-launch was prompted by the deteriorating social climate. Social exclusion, inequality and the emigration were on the rise, with a clear lack of social justice. We also saw what was happening beyond Lithuania’s borders in neighbour countries. We have seen how their societies are not resilient. We wanted to continue our preventive work, keep talking about the idea of the Europe, and invite people to rethink it.” Milda Ališauskienė, Chair of the Board of the Open Society Foundations, 2017

We have founded 26 non-governmental organizations, including Transparency International Lithuanian Chapter, Children’s Support Centre, Junior Achievement, Civil Society Institute, and Lithuanian Journalism Centre. The majority of these organizations are still active today.

We have contributed to the modernization of education by publishing more than 350 textbooks, setting up the Education Development Centre, and contributing to the professional development of teachers.

Between 1990 and 2007, we implemented a publishing programme, which contributed to the development of modern publishing. More than 750 books have been published, which have contributed to the development of scientific, artistic, philosophical, economic, educational and legal thought in Lithuania.

We have provided partial support to more than 6,000 scientists, artists, educators and cultural workers.

We set up the first law clinics, the first public law firms and the first credit union.

We set up the first public internet call centers. In total, over 20 000 subscribers used them. Free public internet access points were also set up.

In 2007, the Open Lithuania Foundation was suspended, deeming the goal of an open civil democratic society to have been achieved.

Establishing the Vilnius Institute for Policy Analysis.

We develop and administrate programmes for NGOs (Active Citizens Fund, VERTA!)

We have set up an NGO academy, the Social Leaders Programme. It is dedicated to strengthening non-governmental organisations

We set up UkreateHub, an initiative for Ukrainians who fled the war and found refuge in Lithuania.

We design and implement projects to promote citizenship, democracy, debate and human rights.