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25 years after the fall of communism, the Center for Thought of John Paul II is embarking on a new project to remind present and future members of the governing professions of the essence of Solidarity –. “The treasure of solidarity lies not in politics or economics,” explains Michał Łuczewski, the Deputy- Director of the Center, “but in the strength of the human spirit, in the desire to make the world more human. This desire never passes away.” In order to understand and restore solidarity –– to its rightful place, one has to dig down to its spiritual roots. This is the objective of the program “The Treasure of Solidarity”.

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Over the next months, a group of ten fellows will explore the treasure of solidarity. Witnesses of the Solidarność movement and the most eminent specialists from Poland and abroad will accompany them in this process. During joint seminars and debates, participants will create a practical manual – „Solidarity – Step by Step” which will aim to explore the essence of solidarity and the conditions for its restoration. With specialists from the Center for Thought of John Paul II, the manual will become the basis for a documentary film and for lesson plans which will reach Polish schools. Finally, the participants, in a series of group discussions will confront Polish politicians with the spiritual heritage of solidarity. The culmination of the program will be an international conference in the European Parliament.

The project will take place from March 2014 to May 2015.

The first and most intensive stage of the project (summer semester) will include:

  • a cycle of seminars (from 15 March to 3 June 2014).
  • meetings with witnesses of „Solidarity” and international experts (from 20 May to 3 June 2014).

The second stage of the project (summer holidays):

  • three-day trip (from 29 to 31 August 2014) – development of a preliminary version of the manual “Solidarity – Step by Step”. Editing the manual will continue until the end of September 2014.
  • study tour (22-29 September) – visits to sites associated with Solidarność, learning about the circumstances in which the movement was born and the people who created it.

The third stage of the project:

  • meetings with Polish politicians from mid-November 2014 until the end of January 2015 (dates chosen by the participants).
  • international conference at the European Parliament in May 2015.