- December 29, 2016
A guidebook dedicated to national minorities in Lithuania will be released
“The success of integration is proportional to whether a person feels safe, understood, free and needed by its country”, says a head of the Department of National Minorities under the Government of Lithuania Vida Montvydaitė. As she says, it is important for the national majority to adopt and understand national minorities and not to ignore citizens while solving current problems.
On of the basic parts of mutual understanding is getting to know those who live around us – notes Montvydaitė. For this reason the Department of National Minorities decided to release a guidebook “National communities in Lithuania. Numbers. Facts. Activity”. It will present 22 biggest national communities of Lithuania, members of which have already set up almost 300 social organizations and more than 40 weekend schools.
“As creators of this issue, we hope that our readers will have a good opportunity to familiarize with national communities, their history, culture, traditions and customs. Through getting to know each other we can create consistent and harmonious society, without ethnic hostility and discrimination”, says Vida Montvydaitė.
“Cultural heritage is a symbol of multicultural society, where the highest values are created through common work, synergy. These are the rules that need to be respected in the 21st century as well, as quite a few countries of Europe and the rest of the world have collided with challenges of multicultural society”, says the head of the Department of National Minorities.
The 36-page catalog shows directions of the Department’s activity, cultural centers of national minorities and awards funded by the Department for the development of intercultural dialogue and contribution to culture and preserving the identity of national minorities. Also the concept of financing NGO project is presented.
The graphic design was influenced by the fact that in Lithuania live representatives of 154 nationalities. Each community has subtitles in its national language.
The content of the release was prepared in cooperation with national minorities. A lot of attention was given to social organizations, historical ties with Lithuania. Communities decided on their own what to say about themselves to Lithuania and fellow citizens. The biggest minorities – Poland, Belarus, Ukraine and Russia – have 2-3 pages in the guidebook, the smaller ones have one page each.
The brochure will be released in 600 copies.
Translated by Agnieszka Drabik within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.