Caritas Lithuania was founded in 1926 by Lithuanian Catholics but was forced to suspend their activities during the Soviet Union occupation in 1940. After the collapse of the occupation from 1989 Caritas Lithuania resumed its activities providing care and assistance to the poor and marginalised.
In 1991 Caritas Lithuania became a member of Caritas Internationalis and Caritas Europe.
During the National Assembly in 1997, Caritas Lithuania name was approved and the organisation was integrated into the structure of the Catholic Church of Lithuania.
From 1997 Caritas has been functioning in the following dioceses of Lithuania: archdioceses of Kaunas, Vilnius, dioceses of Panevėžys, Telšiai, Vilkaviškis, Šiauliai and Kaišiadorys.
Caritas in Lithuania focuses its activities on issues relating to poverty, social exclusion and inequality. Caritas in Lithuania has established and implements over 50 social programmes/projects/activities providing assistance to various social groups and helping the poorest of the poor: children, poor families and elderly peoples, homeless people, victims of human trafficking and prostitutions, the lonely and sick peoples, convicts, persons with addictions and for all who needs supports.
During the last 27 years Caritas in Lithuania has significantly expanded its service and activities. Twenty seven years ago it started with daily support for the deprived, the starving and people in crisis situations. However, during the years, it has expanded to arrangement and implementation of projects, provision of recommendations in the poverty policy field for the local and national institutions.
Professional staff and volunteers of Caritas are experts of the social situation in Lithuania; they have experience and skills for sustainable and real help to the vulnerable people. They are trained to help the outcasts of society return to society, to regain their personal dignity.
In the beginning of 2017 by decision of the Lithuanian Bishops‘ Conference (the founder of Caritas Lithuania) the following direct assistance programs which until recently were being implemented by Caritas Lithuania national office will be given over to other legal persons (the diocese and the parish structure). After the reorganization and according to the new statute Caritas Lithuania national office will focus more strongly on the cooperation development, representation, coordination of humanitarian aid and monitoring as well as implementation of political measures for poverty reduction.
The national office of Caritas Lithuania in Kaunas consists of 4 employees. The whole structure of the Caritas in Lithuania involves more than 3000 volunteers and 110 workers.
Bishop responsible for Caritas Lithuania
Bishop Kęstutis Kėvalas
Chairman of Caritas Lithuania Council
Papilio g. 5
LT - 44275 Kaunas