On March 30, 2009 LATO in cooperation with Ministry of Defence of Latvia, National Armed Forces (NAF) of Latvia with support of NATO and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia started a broad NATO information campaign in the schools of Latvia, thus marking the 5th anniversary of Latvia’s NATO membership and 60 years since founding of NATO. It is planned to visit altogether 50 schools with a special attention to the rural and remote areas. This week already 8 schools in the eastern part of Latvia – Latgale – have been visited.
The goal of the campaign is to inform and educate schoolchildren and their teachers about NATO, its goals and role in Latvia’s security policy, as well about the benefits and costs of the Latvia’s membership.
During the each visit a special short film “Latvia in NATO – five years” shot by the State Agency of the Ministry of Defence of Latvia “Tēvijas sargs” is demonstrated; further experts from Ministry of Defence, National Armed Forces (NAF), LATO, several embassies and universities make presentations about the political and military aspects of NATO, as well as introduce audience with the development and everyday life of National Armed Forces and civil guards. Pupils and teachers are encouraged to ask questions and participate in the quiz – most active ones receive practical presents, souvenirs from LATO, NATO, Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In each school also booklets and both printed and audiovisual information materials about NATO, NAF, security and defence policy issues are distributed.
Information campaign will continue till the middle of May and after the Latgale region, LATO team will visit further schools in Vidzeme, Zemgale, Kurzeme and Riga region.