It’s official! Friends will launch a pilot project in Lithuania in partnership with the Lithuanian children’s rights organization Child Line. Child Line will conduct the Friends Program in Lithuanian schools, where bullying is a widespread phenomenon. 20-30 percent of Lithuanian children have been subjected to bullying in the last months.

Friends initiated an internationalization of its organization a couple of years ago, which has led to the establishment of Friends in Denver, USA. Now, the next step in the internationalization process has started, by formalizing the partnership with the organization Child Line in Lithuania. In spring 2017, the project will commence in pilot schools in Lithuania. The collaboration is made possible by support from the Lithuanian Ministry of Health.

- Bullying is a global problem and although each country and each school have different challenges and solutions, it is important to work together to develop methods and knowledge. Bullying is five times as common in Lithuania as it is in Sweden and we have noticed a great urge for our knowledge and experience. Therefore, it feels great to have received means to support the fight against bullying and make a difference for children and young people in Lithuania, says Jacob Flärdh, Director at Friends International Center Against Bullying.

The pilot project agreement lasts for two years and will begin with the Friends Program being developed and adapted together with pilot schools to fit the Lithuanian context. Friends will train the first schools and Child Line will then continue to implement the program in schools with support from Friends.

- We are very happy to start this collaboration with Friends. We believe that sharing and adapting the wide experience of this organization in prevention of bullying will help us to offer schools new tools and methods on how to effectively reduce bullying among our children, says the Director of Child Line Dr. Robertas Povilaitis.

As part of the cooperation with Child Line, Friends has also assisted the President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaite in developing a stronger Lithuanian Education Act that clearly points out the school’s responsibility to work actively against bullying.

For more information, please contact
Johanna Wilkens, Head of PR, Friends
Phone: +4670 725 54 13
Mail: johanna.wilkens@friends.se