The Minister of Culture has inaugurated a significant cultural institution, “Ośrodek Stocznia – Wolność i Solidarność (the Shipyard Centre – Freedom and Solidarity)”., on August 28, 2023. The center, set to commence operations on August 30, will focus on preserving the heritage of the “Solidarność” movement – a pivotal social and labor movement that played a crucial role in Poland’s transition to democracy.
The historic location, where the “Szczecin Agreements” were signed 43 years ago, holds immense significance as the birthplace of these transformative events. The agreements marked the first-ever collaboration between the ruling authorities and the emerging “Solidarność” labor union, ultimately contributing to the liberation of Poland and influencing Europe.
Prof. Piotr Gliński, Minister of Culture and National Heritage, emphasized the movement’s role in advocating for worker dignity, national sovereignty, and independence. He underscored the movement’s religious dimension and its profound connection with Polish Christianity, which played a pivotal role in its success.
The center’s primary objectives include commemorating the historical significance of the “Solidarność” movement, its contributions to the fall of communism, and its role in shaping Polish society. Education will be a key focus, aiming to reintegrate the ideals of “Solidarność” into the public consciousness.
The newly-established institution, housed in the former shipyard clubhouse where the Szczecin Agreements were signed, will commemorate the movement’s achievements and its impact on Poland’s journey to freedom. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and cultural initiatives, the Center will ensure that the spirit and values of “Solidarność” remain alive and continue to inspire generations.