According to various estimates, up to 3.5 million Belarusians of the first, second and third generations live today outside Belarus. In recent years, Belarus does a lot to maintain the historical connection with the Belarusian diaspora and to enhance cooperation with it. So, schools open abroad to study the Belarusian language, which makes it possible to enter the Belarusian universities. The possibility of distance education is being under discussion.
To provide assistance to the public organizations of compatriots abroad, the Advisory Council for Belarusians abroad was created under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture of Belarus. It includes the heads of the leading associations of Belarusians in Argentina, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, representatives of the Belarusian ministries of Culture, Foreign Affairs, Education, Information, Sports and Tourism, and Interior.
The main tasks of the Advisory Council are to provide practical help to the Belarusians living abroad in:
- preserving and developing their national identity;
- coordinating NGOs in the implementation of the civil, social, cultural and other rights;
- creating the effective mechanisms of cooperation of the Government of the Republic of Belarus at various levels in the cultural, educational, information and other fields;
- promoting mutually beneficial economic cooperation between Belarus and the country of residence of Belarusians;
- assistance in creating favorable legal and institutional conditions for Belarusians that took decision to return to Belarus for permanent residence.
Many natives Belarus residing in the Netherlands actively cooperate with the Embassy to strengthen bilateral Belarusian-Dutch relations. Belarus Embassy in The Hague invites compatriots to further promote and implement mutually beneficial projects in the fields of economy, culture and education.