The Bernard van Leer Foundation is a private grant-making foundation. Our mission is to improve opportunities for children up to age 8 who are growing up in socially and economically difficult circumstances. We see this both as a valuable end in itself and as a long-term means to promote more cohesive, considerate and creative societies with equal opportunities and rights for all.
Latest news from the Bernard van Leer Foundation
A foundation partner since 1990, the Centro Popular de Cultura e Desenvolvimento (CPCD) has been nominated for a 2011 Globe Award in the Sustainable City category for its work in Araçuaí, Brazil. BvLF has supported two early childhood projects as part of this work - Hug's Pedagogy and the Sementinha ("little seed") approach explored in a previous issue of our journal Early Childhood Matters.
While the details of BvLF’s country strategy in Israel remain under development, the foundation’s first approved grant of 2011 lays the ground for progress towards our first defined goal in the country – universal access to quality pre-school among 3 to 6 year old children. Read more
Calling all entrepreneurs in Tanzania, Uganda, India, Turkey, Peru or Brazil. Do you have a business idea that could have a positive impact on young children by improving the physical environment in which they grow up? Examples could be cleaner energy, water and sanitation solutions, better housing, safer transport, safer places to play, and so on. Are you seeking finance in the range of US$ 10,000 to US$ 1 million? If so, check out the Business Benefiting Children competition sponsored by BvLF and implemented by the BiD Network. You could win support from a coach to improve your business plan, a business trip for training, and access to over 100 investors. The deadline to submit your short business plan is March 15th for Peru and Brazil and March 31st for Turkey, India, Uganda and Tanzania.
Professor Nathaniel Laor — one of the world’s leading experts in the traumatic impact of disasters on children, families, and communities — will deliver the 2011 Van Leer Lecture on Sunday, April 10, at the Council on Foundations Annual Conference in Philadelphia, U.S.A. He will discuss the harrowing impact of violence in children’s lives and offer ways to build resilience to traumatic events. Read more (pdf)
Imagine you are a young child and one of your parents is in prison. Perhaps you don’t know – maybe you unexpectedly went to live with your aunt, who told you your mother was called away on an important secret mission. When relatives are caring for children of imprisoned parents, they often will try to shield the child from the truth. Read more
A long-standing BvLF project, Una: The Global Learning Initiative on Children and Ethnic Diversity (formerly JLICED – Joint Learning Initiative for Children and Ethnic Diversity) is holding an international conference in Amsterdam on May 12-14. Spearheaded by Professor Paul Connolly of Queen's University Belfast, Una is a global, inter-disciplinary network of leading researchers and practitioners committed to reducing racial and ethnic divisions and building socially inclusive communities through the promotion of effective early childhood programs. Aimed at practitioners, researchers and policymakers, the conference - Building peacable communities: The power of early childhood - will explore the power of early childhood as a force for reducing racial and ethnic divisions and building peaceable communities. NB: The call for papers deadline is March 11th.
The first issue of Early Childhood in Focus, on Attachment Relationships: Quality of Care for Young Children, is now available in pdf format in Hungarian translation. Published in collaboration with the Open University, Early Childhood in Focus accessibly reviews the best and most recent research, information and analysis on key policy issues, offering clear messages for advocates.
On January 17th an interview with Trude Maas-de Brouwer, Trustee of the Bernard van Leer Foundation, appeared in the Dutch newspaper Sp¡ts. It is part of a series by Sp¡ts reporter Alexander Bakker talking to influential people on how the Netherlands will look in 2030. You can find the article online in Dutch here, or read a summary in English.