On October 25, 2021 Chairman of the PAFF Board of Directors Andrew Nagorski in the company of Head of Polish-American Freedom Foundation Representative Office in Poland Grzegorz Jędrys and PAFF Program Director Agnieszka Mazur met the participants of the Foundation’s programs – “Green Leader” pilot project and Library Development Program.
The main objective of the Chairman’s of PAFF Board of Directors visit to Klembów was the meeting with participants of “Green Leader” pilot project and learning about its effects. The pilot project has been implemented since February 2021, its closing is expected at the end of November. The manager of the project is Sendzimir Foundation whose representatives – Managing Director Ilona Gosk and pilot project coordinator Maria Wiśnicka attended the meeting at the Communal Office at Klembów.
The objective of the Green Leader project is to support local leaders – NGOs and local government – in their activities aimed at limiting the environment degradation, also due to climate change, in their localities. The other, equally important objective of that pilot project is to support leaders and local communities in effective obtaining funds for such activities from external sources, especially European Union.
At the meeting Klembów commune mayor Rafał Mathiak, as well as Marcin Piotrowski of Folkowisko Association of Borderland Culture Animation of Gorajec, and Katarzyna Fornal-Urbańczyk of Zamość Town Hall presented their pro-ecological campaigns under Green Leader pilot project. At Klembów the idea of composting was popularized among the residents which led to limiting the amounts of bio-waste collected. In turn in Zamość a model solution of rainwater use is implemented, and the Folkowisko festival organizers managed to introduce the festival waste segregation and significantly decrease the amounts of mixed waste (for example thanks to resigning from using disposable tableware and promoting pro-ecological attitudes among the festival participants).
The meeting participants admitted that apart from knowledge gained during the implementation, the big advantage offered by the project is an opportunity to meet leaders coming from various parts of Poland, share experiences with them and inspire each other in the area of environmental protection and climate.
Andrew Nagorski, Grzegorz Jędrys and Agnieszka Mazur had also a meeting with Izabela Bochińska, director of very dynamically operating Zofia Nałkowska Municipal Public Library in Wołomin, a participant of the Library Development Program. Director Bochińska presented the changes that have been implemented in that institution recently, also thanks to participation in the program.
Izabela Bochińska presented not only the activities aimed at popularizing readership which she and the library staff run, but also other educational and cultural projects, such as book signing or evenings with poetry and music, which encourage to reading books and participating in culture but also activate socially the residents of Wołomin. The library runs the Toddler’s Club, board games or good films rental; it also holds cycling rallies.
‘I’m very impressed with activities of your library. It’s really very dynamic institution with very broad area of operation which contributes a lot to local community development,’ Andrew Nagorski concluded.
The meeting was attended by vice mayor of Wołomin Łukasz Marek, members of Book Club and young people of Volunteer Club active in the library.
Thanking for the nice meeting the Chairman of PAFF Board of Directors presented all participants of the meetings with thank you gifts – his latest book “1941. The Year Germany Lost the War”, each of them with his dedication.
Andrew Nagorski is the Chairman of PAFF Board of Directors, former Vice President and Director for Public Policy at East-West Institute, New York. For many years, he had worked for Newsweek International as the Senior Editor and correspondent to Hongkong, Moscow, Rome, Bonn, Warsaw, and Berlin. He is the author of many award-winning non-fiction publications.