SOS Children’s Villages supports individual children, young people and families so that they can thrive (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Lithuania).

Vilnius is the capital and largest city of Lithuania, and home to just over 560,000 people. The city has a diverse population composed of around 67% Lithuanians, 15% Poles, 10% Russians, and 3% Belarusians. Vilnius is the political, cultural, and economic centre of the country, and the relative prosperity of the region has attracted people from other areas to move here in search of better living conditions and opportunities.

Since 1995, SOS Children’s Villages has been supporting children, young people and families and advocating for their rights in Vilnius.

1 in 4
Children are at risk of poverty

Children living in poverty

Poverty rates in Lithuania have remained among the highest in Europe. More than 17% of households with children are at a high risk of poverty. Of these households, 26% of large families and 45% of single-parent households are at the highest risk of poverty. Children in low-income families live precariously on the margins of society, facing social exclusion that worsen their prospect of a brighter future.

2 in 5
Children in poverty experience overcrowding

Lack of personal space

Lack of personal space: many Lithuanian children experience high levels of overcrowding. Over 30% of children in high-income families and 43% in low-income families live in overcrowded homes. This increases to almost 50% in single-parent households. Cramped living conditions harm family relationships, negatively affect children's education and contribute to mental health challenges. These environments prevent children from finding space for themselves and increase the risk of violence within families.

Your support makes a difference for children in Vilnius

SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities to offer a wide range of support that is adapted to the local context. We always work in the best interest of the children, young people and families.
Adults and children
Are supported in the community
Attend our kindergarten
Grow up in our care
Young people
Are supported on their way to independence
Children spending time together and with horses. Children grow up with each other, and often form bonds that last a lifetime (photo: SOS Children’s Villages Lithuania).

How your support helps in Vilnius

Strengthening families and communities
When parents face hardships, they can sometimes struggle to give children the care they need. SOS Children’s Villages works with local partners and communities. Each family needs different support so that they can stay together. This support can include workshops on parenting and children’s rights. We also run trainings so that parents can get the skills they need to get a job or start businesses. Likewise, we ensure that children can get medical help and go to school.
Providing quality education
SOS Children’s Villages ensures that children and young people have access to high-quality education. We help them learn and develop in a safe and supportive environment. We train teachers on children’s rights and child-centered learning, so that each child can get the most out of their education. Young children spend time playing and learning at kindergarten. This prepares them for primary school.
Caring for children who cannot live with their families
Some children cannot stay with their families, even with additional support. When this happens, they can find a new home in SOS Children’s Villages. Some children live in foster families. We also provide short-term care for chidren who need urgent care. Wherever possible, we work closely with the children’s family of origin. If children can return to live with their families, we help them adapt to this change.
Supporting young people to become independent
To help young people become confident and independent, our local team works closely with each young person to develop a plan for their future. We support young people and also help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects. For example, young people can attend workshops and trainings run by SOS Children’s Villages. They also improve their skills through taking part in different projects with local mentors and businesses.