Starting from 2015 we have been noticing an alarming tendency to limit civic activities independent of the government, and at the same time, the 2020 Centrum Badania Opinii Społecznej study results show that there has been an increase of interest among Poles in activities aiming at fighting for women’s and minority rights. Such an increase creates considerable potential for civic movements, but it requires comprehensive support to survive and develop. According to our 2020 survey among young organisations and activist groups in Poland there is high demand for developing tools related to getting organised, obtaining funds, preventing activist burnout, group work, or conflict management and providing education in these fields.
We will address these needs by conducting two editions of a programme supporting a total of 18 young organisations or informal group from three different locations in Poland, Warsaw, Gdańsk and Cieszyn, active in the field of rule of law, democracy, ecology, women’s and minority rights. In each edition we will organise a training on how to acquire funds, communicate, build a group/organisation, or run a social campaign. We will discuss activist burnout and ways to take care of yourself when working for others. We will combine it with bodywork, and meditation classes. At the end, we will popularise best activist work practices and will encourage more young organisations to take part in the second edition.
Our first partner is the European Community Organizing Network gathering social organisations from Europe that will run some training sessions for us. Thanks to its presence, we will also be able to show the European dimension of civic engagement to our participants. Our second partner is the Rzecz Społeczna Foundation that supports initiatives gathering people with different outlooks. It will support us with its human resources and competencies in the field of training.