The participants were welcomed by Paweł Łukasiak, the President of Academy for the Development of Philanthropy in Poland (ADPP), and Kalina Grzeszuk-Zajączkowska, the Program Manager at the Polish-American Freedom Foundation, who informed about the challenges of the 11th round of Act Locally program. Next, Paweł Zań, the Program Coordinator at ADPP presented the most important program objectives and modifications.
The opening lecture – From the Sense of Injustice to Hateful Comments. From Empathy to Social Engagement – was given by the Special Guest Wojciech Eichelberger, psychotherapist, coach and business advisor, co-initiator of the Institute of Psychoimmunology. As he noted, presently there are fewer and fewer opportunities to practice empathy which seems especially significant in confrontation with aggression and animosity, and whose tools can be justified anger and belief that acting for the common good brings the sense of efficacy. In face of animosity, it is the critical role of NGOs to give people sense of their efficacy, Wojciech Eichelberger said.
Over the remaining time of the two-day meeting, there were 23 training and workshop sessions grouped into blocs that were held at the same time.
One of the important blocs was on funds available for NGOs. Izabela Plur i Jan Zdrojewicz, representing National Freedom Institute – Center for the Development of Civil Society told about Civil Organization Development Program, Sylwia Sobiepan, a representative of Stefan Batory Foundation, informed about the Norway Grants and the Active Citizens program, while Tomasz Kiersnowski of Together’89 encouraged NGOs to take part in celebrating the 30th anniversary of democratic transformation of Poland.
New Google AdWords technologies and tools were presented by Krzysztof Wroński of Semihouse, and Monika Mazur-Rafał and Aleksandra Hołyńska of Humanity in Action Foundation advised how to deal with the hateful comments phenomenon in social media. Also, Tomasz Schimanek, an ADPP expert spoke on changes to legal regulations of Third Sector activities.
At the same time, on both days Łukasz Ostrowski and Katarzyna Wójcikowska of Shipyard – Centre for Social Innovation and Research were holding workshops on the realities of Act Locally Centers and Local Grant Committees work.
On the second day, the meeting participants took part in a workshop on methods of generating ideas conducted by Tomasz Pilewicz and Joanna Fogler of MOST Foundation. There was also a workshop session on tools useful for project implementation, conducted by Joanna Kurkowska of Evenea. On Evenea.pl platform which presents various events in the area of professional and personal development the participants could learn from the lecture given by Piotr Wojdat. Furthermore, Marcin Gołąbek of Amplifier Association told about Real Time Marketing in NGO, while Andrzej Pietrucha of Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation presented methods for effective Internet fundraising campaign planning.
There was also a separate training bloc, conducted by Tomek Schimanek, an ADPP expert, on application of the animation for common good method in Act Locally program.
This-year’s training meeting was participated by 160 representatives of Act Locally Centers.
The training meetings for members of the Network of Act Locally Centers are part of the program’s offer and are aimed at improving the participants’ competence as well as local organizations’ potential to develop.
Act Locally program is the Polish-American Freedom Foundation initiative implemented by the Academy for the Development of Philanthropy in Poland. To date 10.400 projects have been performed as part of it all over Poland. They involved a total of over 3.8 million residents and almost 220 thousand volunteers. The program is based on cooperation with the Network of 74 Act Locally Centers covering almost 650 municipalities and rural communes all over Poland.