A community experience in Szczekociny

19th of September, 2020. We came to Szczekociny to participate in the 2nd edition of the Szczekociny. Experiencing Community Forum. Everyone sat at one table - students, teachers, local government representatives, non-profit organization members, as well as members of the local community. We talked about strengthening human bonds, the community’s needs and expectations, finding new solutions. We attempted to answer key questions - how to think about our environment in a more inclusive way? How to take responsibility for the community and its shape? How to be a citizen, but also how to experience the place we live in in a more wholesome way? How to embrace its history, traditions, culture? How to grow from the experiences of others, while preserving our hometown’s identity? 

This was a fantastic lesson on dialogue, bridging generational gaps, and discussing issues important for the entire community - from creating a space for active young citizens, making public spaces more attractive, to enhancing the quality of local transportation. It is crucial for all generations, especially the younger ones represented by students, to feel they can influence their surroundings - that they can really be an active part of their community.

Mirosław Skrzypczyk, who coordinated the preparation of the forum at the Szczekociny School Complex, comments: the school is the best place to meet. It is at school where we should learn to talk, embrace dialogue, find common solutions. The forum is thought of as a cyclic event, and it already became an indispensable part of the city’s event calendar. It is organized thanks to the cooperation of members of the entire community. This process itself shows how citizens can make decisions simply by participating - through the community, and for the community.

The Forum was organized together by the EFC Foundation (as part of our Partner School program), the Szczekociny School Complex, and the Szczekociny Alumni Association. The Forum was also carried out in partnership with the Szczekociny Town Council and STOCZNIA.