Since 2014 Polpharma has been a partner of the Development Initiation Forum and the associated Development Initiation Fund. The idea behind the undertaking stems from the experience and needs of representatives of three sectors: the local government, business and NGOs. Its objective is to build a platform of intersectoral cooperation for the development of the Pomerania region by initiating and supporting interesting ventures and local projects.
Two grant competitions have been held as part of the Development Initiation Fund (DIF) to select projects which contribute to the development of local communities and enhance the quality of life of the residents of Pomerania.
DIF grants may be applied for by intersectoral partnerships representing at least:
- one non-governmental organization,
- one public-sector entity,
- and one private-sector entity.
A representative of the NGO sector must be the applicant and at the same time also the leader of the partnership. The areas covered by DIF-supported projects are diverse. The initiatives chosen so far have focused on topics such as providing equal opportunities, sports, education, healthy lifestyle and regional identity.
In the first competition held by the Development Initiation Fund, the jury selected five best projects among fifty entries. Beneficiaries, their business sector and public sector partners achieved the following social outcomes thanks to the support from the Development Initiation Fund:
- DALBA Social Cooperative in Puck (The project “A Cooperative That Brews More”) – establishment of a non-profit Brewery Cooperative. Its overarching objective is to create jobs for people with intellectual disabilities, mainly including former participants of the Occupational Therapy Workshops in Puck. The brewery now employs 12 people with intellectual disabilities. The project’s long-term effect is the creation of a new business model in Poland (a combination of a craft brewery and a social cooperative), which aims to aid people excluded from the labour market. The brewery is the sixth enterprise of this type in the world and the first one in Poland.
- Social Cooperation Cooperative in Sopot (Luk Luk charity shop in Sopot) – launch of the first charity shop in Pomerania, providing jobs to 5 long-term unemployed people. The guiding principle of the charity shop is “giving a new lease on life to both things and people”. It promotes a new cooperative model in the Pomerania region, based on the premise of “donating-buying-creating jobs for those who need it most”. In the long term, the project has helped to increase the local social capital, enhance the sharing economy and contribute to a more reasonable use of resources.
- Mamy z Morza Foundation in Gdynia (Pomeranian Parenting Clubs) – creating space for parents to meet and for children to have fun in Kartuzy, Puck and Kościerzyna
- Kashubian Business Incubator in Kościerzyna – a series of training sessions and consultations provided in the framework of the Kashubian Academy of Enterprise to promote entrepreneurship, encourage people to establish small and medium-sized companies and stimulate economic activity in the Kościerzyna District.
- Grupa Kolarska Starogard Gdański Association (cycling team) (MTB Kociewie Szlakiem Marathon) – organisation of a sports event with the objective to promote the Kociewie region and its tourism potential, as well as mountain biking and family bike tours
We cross our fingers for the success of the winning projects and we intend to stay involved in the development of intersectoral cooperation in Pomerania.
On 2 December 2015, at the 4th Development Initiation Forum held at the Energa Gdańsk stadium, winners of the second edition of the Fund received their awards.
The intersectoral partnerships could receive grants worth up to PLN 25,000 for the implementation of their project proposals. The pool of money earmarked for this competition amounted to PLN 100,000.
The funding went towards innovative intersectoral projects designed to support local community development and tangibly improve the quality of life in Pomerania.
The DIF Jury selected four winning intersectoral partnerships among 24 entries. These were:
- “Construction of a playing field in the village of Złe Mięso” - a project led by the Złe Mięso Voluntary Fire Brigade,
- “RAZEM at the table” - a project submitted by the RAZEM Social Cooperative,
- “A green light for the eco-development of the Wicko Municipality” - a project proposed by the “Inicjatywa” Association for the Development of the Wicko Municipality,
- “For starters” - a project entered by the Wybiegaj Marzenia Foundation.
To learn more about the projects, go to http://forumrozwoju.org.pl/