Almost 11,000 rural housewives’ associations registered in Poland play a key role in the everyday life of the Polish countryside – not only in nurturing its identity and tradition, but also in dynamic modernization. Their members from all over the country met in Warsaw at the second nationwide conference “The Circle of Rural Housewives – Leaders of a Safe Village”.
Last weekend, representatives of Circles from all over the country met at the Warsaw seat of the National Institute of Rural Culture and Heritage. Honorary patronage over the event, organized by Fundacja Krajowa Grupa Spożywcza S.A. Agata Kornhauser-Duda, wife of the President of the Republic of Poland, embraced “Helping to strengthen”. The partner of the project was the National Institute of Rural Culture and Heritage. The Agricultural Social Insurance Fund also took patronage over the event, and the cooperating entities were the Agency for Restructuring and Modernization of Agriculture and the National Center for Agricultural Support.
“Over the last dozen or so years, the Rural Housewives’ Clubs have significantly expanded the scope of their activities. Today, they do not only protect the traditions and heritage of rural areas, but are more and more willing to engage in the process of digitization of the Polish countryside or promoting a healthy, active lifestyle.”, Member of the Management Board of Krajowa Grupa Spożywcza SA and Vice-Chairman of the Board of the “Pomaganie krzepi” Foundation, Tomasz Nowakowski said.
The Rural Housewives’ Clubs have almost 150 years of tradition in Poland. The first of them, hanks to the activist Filipina Platkowicka, was established in 1877 in Janisłowice. Women, regardless of their place of residence, social status, material status or education, have always met, talked and undertaken various activities. Rural housewives’ clubs activity is addressed not only to female members, but also to the entire local community. This is especially visible during regular events from the calendar of a given commune, such as harvest festivals, festivals or processions.
“The Rural Housewives’ Clubs operate very dynamically and contribute to the integration of local communities. They also use public support more and more willingly. So far, we have donated PLN 195 million for our statutory activities. At the same time, the preparation of a preventive health program addressed to the inhabitants of rural areas is ongoing. It will be implemented in cooperation with the Agricultural Social Insurance Fund and the Ministry of Health.”, President of the Agency for Restructuring and Modernization of Agriculture, Halina Szymańska said.
The main topic of this year’s conference was the health situation of the Polish countryside – the so-called health debt is much more visible there than in urban centers. During the second panel of the conference, representatives of Rural housewives’ clubs discussed the possibilities of the Circles in terms of responding to the challenges of contemporary reality. There have been many inspiring examples of Rural housewives’ clubs activities that not only respond to the needs of local communities but also show the reaction of the Circles to the events following the war in Ukraine or a pandemic.