The 2020 year of the pandemic brought a considerable uncertainty for all. The education system was not an exception. It had to take care of the security of both employees and pupils and also convert to the remote teaching/learning system that had been unfamiliar so far. The activities of the Fund have not stopped: it continued cooperation with education and research organisations and supported their projects.
In 2020, the strategic activity direction of the Fund remained the same, i.e. to support initiatives that contribute to ensuring comprehensive, equivalent and quality education and that are aimed at a long-term positive change.
Support to the strategic partner “I choose to teach – for changes in schools!”
In line with the envisaged support strategy, the Fund has been the sponsor of the strategic project “I choose to teach – for changes in schools!” since 2016. The purpose of this project implemented by the Centre for School Improvement is to bring together Lithuanian schools for a joint work, so that each pupil can experience the learning success and is the creator of his school and country.
Aimed at change, the programme attracts and trains motivated participants who are focused on helping others and who subsequently work at school as teachers for two years. Not only teachers, but also national schools contribute to change – together with programme participants they implement change projects. They cover an innovative professional development and counselling programme for teachers, heads and the entire school community, an integrated progress research, and resources allocated for change implementation in schools.
In 2020, the programme “I choose to teach – for changes in schools!” was joined by 29 new participants and 16 schools from different Lithuanian cities and towns, which will implement different long-term change projects. During its history of six years, 60 schools have been taking part or have taken part in the project, 87 “I choose to teach” teachers have been working or have worked in these schools, and changes have involved as many as 37 000 pupils and 360 heads and teachers already working in those schools.
Support to other educational projects
In 2020, the Fund DABAR contributed to two educational programmes implemented by the Lithuanian Free Market Institute. Support was allocated to the integrated education programme “A Citizen in 31 Hours”. The programme aimed at improving the quality of raising social awareness and developing critical thinking skills of pupils from grades 9–12 by providing the innovative content of integrated teaching of economics, ethics and citizenship, as well as measures and competences. In 2020, the programme was used by over 600 teachers, and 65 000 pupils across Lithuania stated having experienced more engaging and creative classes of economics, ethics and civic education.
Part of support has also been allocated to the project “National Economics Exam”. This project is known as an efficient means to educate citizens and encourage them to take interest in the principles of economics and improve financial literacy. In 2020, almost 11 000 participants took the economics exam, with the surprising diversity among them – there were pupils and students, also people who had accomplished their studies long ago, and professional economists.
Institutional support was also allocated to Vilnius University support foundation “Vilnius University Foundation” focussed on granting scholarships to talented students, attracting the academicians with the highest ability and international experience, financing the business trips of promising lecturers, researchers and students, supporting scientific research of the highest quality, study programmes that meet global needs, and promoting other projects with high added value.
We are glad to have contributed to the international contest of adults’ and pupils’ literacy “National Dictation 2020”, which has been organised by VšĮ Pilietinės minties institutas 13 years in a row. Last year, 20 000 Lithuanians from around the globe participated in this contest and wrote a dictation simultaneously.
In 2020, the Fund allocated EUR 258 000 for support and charity (EUR 344 000 in 2019).
Last year, the companies owned by Vilniaus prekyba granted support and charity in the amount of EUR 2 292 064 to various public and non-profit organisations, thus contributing to the welfare of local communities. We are a large business group taking an important position in the markets of the Baltic states and Central Europe, thus we understand that we are responsible not only for the welfare of our clients and employees, but also for the welfare of society and the surrounding environment.
The full report for 2020, including the independent auditor’s report, annual report, balance sheet, activity report and explanatory notes, is available here: https://fondasdabar.lt/en/annual-activity-reports/.