RIGA, Latvia — The Children and Youth Services Center, "Vabolite" re-opened its doors to children of Latvia during an opening ceremony here, Jan. 9, 2009. "Vabolite" is in the Vabole municipality, Daugavpils region and was renovated under the leadership of Army Lt. Col. Thomas Butler, Chief of the U.S. Embassy's Office of Defense Cooperation in Latvia, in cooperation with the Latvian Government and Latvian Home Guards.
U.S. European Command provided financial and engineering support within the framework of its Engineering Division and Civil Military Operations Branch. The total financial support for the renovation was $276,432.00 (USD).
Several more projects directed at providing support for orphanages and senior citizen's centers in Latgale have been approved and are in the process of realization.
The U.S. Embassy works in close cooperation with Latvian governmental institutions in identifying and completing humanitarian assistance projects, such as these.
Previous ODC Humanitarian Assistance projects in Latvia include: excess property donations to social centers like Naujene, Vegi, Ilgi and Aizviki; as well as more complex projects such as renovation of household elevator for Kalkuni Orphanage and installation of Sports field for Priedite Orphanage.