Iwona Olkowicz

photo of Iwona Olkowicz

Program Coordinator, Academy for the Development of Philanthropy in Poland, Warsaw, Poland, E-mail: iwonao@filantropia.org.pl, LinkedIn profile of Iwona Olkowicz

Your experience with the CFs and your professional relevance to the theme of CFs:

Since 1998 involved in CF development in Poland. In 1998-2006 responsible for CF Development Program; in 2007-2011 coordinator of the V4 Community Foundation Maturity Program.

Since 2004 coordinator of the grant program “Act Locally” which supports local grantmakers, including CFs in Poland.

Area of your particular interest in the CF development/ CF management/ practice (please specify if this is a theme where you are interested to learn more, bring your own expertise or both):

Topics to share and to learn about best practices: fundraising events, building endowment/memorial funds, educational and promotional campaigns.

Key characteristics and information about the CFs and community philanthropy in your country:

In Poland there are over 20 CFs at different stages of development. The first of them were established in 1997, some are just a few years old. Some are experienced with the endowment reaching 1 million PLN (~310,000 USD), some are emerging CFs – these are organizations that meet most of the requirements of CFs. The total value of their endowments is over 6 million PLN (~2,6 M USD). The total value of the grants and scholarships awarded by those organizations till now exceed 14M USD. All of them have the form of foundation (12 CFs) or association (14 organizations). In contrast to most associations, their actions are dedicated to support local communities, not members of the organization.

CFs in Poland organize grant programs (supporting: youth, senior citizens, disabled people, local communities) in order to promote activity of local inhabitants; they run scholarship programs which allow youth to continue education; to reconstruct the pre-war philanthropy tradition, they promote individual and corporate donors by organizing Benefactor of the Year or Philanthropist of the Year Gala; they promote the idea of CFs and philanthropy by organizing Charity Balls and other charity events; they raise public awareness by organizing campaigns and public collections.