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

The 1st National Award for Projects with Child Participation (Brazil) goes to... 12-08-2014

On August 5th the ceremony for the 1st National Award for Projects with Child Participation (Prêmio Nacional de Projetos com Participação Infantil) was held in Ipanema, Brazil. The first prize winning project is: Escola de Comunicação da Meninada do Sertão (Fundação Casa Grande Memorial do Homem Kariri). The competition, conducted by CECIP (Centro de Criação da Imagem Popular), with support from the Bernard van Leer Foundation, aims to enrich the field and practical discussions around the idea of child participation in Brazil. Read more

Investing in young children makes good business sense 04-08-2014

'In 2007 The Lancet medical journal published an article stating that more than 200 million children under five fail to reach their potential in cognitive development because of poverty, poor health and nutrition, and lack of responsive caregiving. This statistic made the rounds in the worlds of public health, education and other segments of society generally focused on the welfare of our youngest citizens. Unfortunately, it did not achieve the same degree of penetration among one of the most powerful global communities --- business leaders. Why?'Michael Feigelson, Interim Executive Director (The Guardian, 1 August 2014)

Read the complete article by Michael Feigelson in 'The Guardian'.

New video WithoutViolence: Violence is preventable 04-08-2014

'Violence is preventable' is the message in a new film launched by WithoutViolence. This animated film outlines facts about the impact of violence and gives some examples of the ways in which violence in the lives of children has been effectively reduced around the globe.
WithoutViolence is a new field-building pilot project designed to help violence prevention leaders and practitioners communicate solutions and accelerate their impact for improving the lives of boys and girls. WithoutViolence is funded by the Bernard van Leer Foundation. Read more

BvLF announces new interim Executive Director 24-07-2014

Michael Feigelson today takes over as interim Executive Director of the Bernard van Leer Foundation, following the departure of Lisa Jordan.

The proud father of a new baby daughter, Michael has worked for the Foundation since 2007, most recently as Programme Director. He has spent the last 15 years focused on working with governments, civil society and business to improve opportunities for children and youth around the world. He is a former Thomas J. Watson Fellow and McKinsey & Company consultant and has degrees from Princeton and Wesleyan University. Read more about Michael and the rest of the Foundation team here.

Webinar on Responsive Parenting 10-07-2014

Three authors from the latest edition of Early Childhood Matters - Jennifer Lansford (the Better Parenting Programme in Jordan), Adrienne Burgess (Reaching out to fathers: ‘what works’ in parenting interventions?) and Catherine Ward (Parenting for Lifelong Health: from South Africa to other low-and middle-income countries) - present their articles in this hour-long webinar, which includes an audience Q&A. You can also download the webinar presentation

New corporate Twitter account 10-07-2014

The Bernard van Leer Foundation has just launched a brand new corporate Twitter account! Follow us @BvLFoundation to stay updated on the latest news regarding our Foundation.

Join our webinar on Responsive Parenting 30-06-2014

Join us for the Early Childhood Matters webinar on Responsive parenting as a strategy to prevent violence, coming July 10th.

Further to the newest published edition of Early Childhood Matters, a webinar will be held that features brief presentations and Q&A opportunities with three authors of articles in this edition:

- Jennifer E. Lansford, Research Professor, Duke University Centre for Child and Family Policy;
- Adrienne Burgess, Joint CEO and Head of Research, Fatherhood Institute;
- Catherine L. Ward, Associate Professor, Department of Psychology and Safety and Violence Initiative, University of Cape Town.

This webinar will take place on July 10th, 2014:
16:00 hrs - 17:00 hrs (Amsterdam local time)
10:00 hrs - 11:00 hrs (New York, USA)
19:30 hrs - 20:30 hrs (Delhi, India)

To register please click here.

Early Childhood Matters on responsive parenting 23-06-2014

ECM 122 cover imageThe new edition of the Bernard van Leer Foundation's biannual journal, Early Childhood Matters, addresses the theme of responsive parenting, and in particular the potential for responsive parenting programmes to reduce the incidence of violence against young children.

Download the pdf, read online at, or request your free printed copy now.

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