The competition is a continuation of the idea promoted by the “SOS SOCIAL ASSISTANCE” Foundation in 1997. It was initiated by Jacek Kuroń at the request of Wisława Szymborska who asked to help her share with the society the money from her Nobel Prize for Literature.
The objective of the competition is to show activity of people and organizations supporting them in dealing with various social problems, and popularize examples of civic attitudes and taking the matters into their own hands, not waiting for institutional help.
This year candidates for the Newsweek Polska “Civic Leader of the Year” title can be proposed in three categories: national, local, and in the category of social involvement during COVID-19 epidemic. The submissions can be made by NGOs, public institutions, informal groups, companies, religious associations and individuals (provided that they can indicate the organization or institution that can give recommendations).
The application form and Competition Regulations can be found on: www.filantropia.org.pl/post/spolecznikroku and www.spolecznikroku.newsweek.pl. The applications with nominations can be submitted by September 30, 2020 (inclusive) at: email@example.com.
The competition will be decided sometime in the first three months of 2021. Their profiles and activities will be presented in the article published in Newsweek Polska weekly.
The winner will be selected by the Competition Committee composed of: Renata Kim, head of the Society section, Newsweek Polska; Jerzy Koźmiński, President of the Polish-American Freedom Foundation; Jan Kuroń, Jacek Kuroń’s grandson; Tomasz Lis, Editor-in-Chief of Newsweek Polska; Paweł Łukasiak, President of the Academy for the Development of Philanthropy in Poland; Janina Ochojska, President of the Polish Humanitarian Action Przemysław Radwan-Röhrenschef, Vice President of the School for Leaders Foundation; and Michał Rusinek, President of Wisława Szymborska Foundation.
The Main Partner of the Newsweek Polska Competition for the Civic Leader of the Year title is the Polish-American Freedom Foundation, and the Substantive Partner is the Academy for the Development of Philanthropy in Poland.
To date, among the holders of the Civic Leader of the Year title you can find:
Elmi Abdi – he is struggling to improve life conditions and image of immigrants in Poland, as he personally has some experience in the area. He is the President of Foundation for Somalia which gives comprehensive support to foreigners and runs educational activities such as multicultural lessons for children and young people at public schools.
Janusz Owsiany, expert in Warsaw studies and the President of Monopol Warszawski Association involves in activities aimed at revitalization of North Praga district of Warsaw, He makes efforts to improve the situation of war veterans; he laso contributed to establishing the Day Center for Warsaw Insurgents.
Elżbieta Krajewska-Kułak, for years active in the area of protection and promotion of children’s and seniors’ health. She is a the co-founder of Białystok Children’s Hospice, and an initiator of Healthy Senior University, and Healthy Kindergartener University, as well as a founder of Pro Salute Association that helps children with muscular dystrophy.
Ewa Błaszczyk, the co-founder of “Akogo?” Foundation, supporting children in need of rehabilitation after serious neurological injury and their families. She succeeded in opening of Budzik (Alarm Clock) pioneer Neuro-rehabilitation Clinic at the Children’s Memorial Health Institute and of Budzik dla dorosłych (Alarm Clock for Adults) in Olsztyn.
R.I.P. Piotr Pawłowski, the founder of Fundacja Integracja (Integration Foundation) acting for the benefit of people with various disabilities. The initiator of social campaigns, he was involved in actions aimed at amending laws and removing architectural, digital and social barriers that make life difficult for the disabled.
Piotr Bystrianin who works against discrimination of immigrants, supports inter-cultural integration, and promotes wise struggle with problems faced by foreigners in Poland.
Barbara and Krzysztof Margol who have been changing life of Nidzica local community through various actions carried out by them themselves and the organization they are leaders of. They have been reviving the region for example by creating new jobs and organizing scholarship programs.