Since the year 2016 The Department of National Minorities under the Government of the Republic of Lithuania implements the European Commission-funded project “Lithuanian Roma Platform – going local”. The main goal of the project is to promote cooperation between municipal institutions and the Roma community in order to ensure the integration of Roma people into Lithuanian society.
The most important idea of the project is to create ‘Roma platforms’ in those municipalities where the largest Roma communities are concentrated. The activity of ‘Roma platforms’ is ensured by mediators who help the local Roma community and municipal institutions to develop harmonious cooperative relations. Since the beginning of the project, “Roma platforms” have been established in Vilnius, Panevėžys, Marijampole, Šiauliai, Kybartai, Jonava, Eišiškės (Šalčininkų district). Currently, four “Roma platforms” are operating – in Vilnius, Jonava, Marijampole and Kybartai. The mediators working in them are helping the Roma community members to solve the issues that have arisen in various municipal institutions; cooperate with educational institutions to ensure attendance; organize various events for Roma children and families; present Roma culture and traditions to the local community.
Activities aimed at empowering Roma youth and women are included in the project “Lithuanian Roma Platform – going local”. Many events are organized for them to promote citizenship, activity and social skills development.
Since Roma often face discrimination, the project focuses on promoting tolerance and fighting against negative stereotypes.
The fifth stage of the project is currently being implemented, which will end in August 2023.
The two-year budget of the project is about 200 000 EUR.