Civic education, Environment and sustainability

Brains, hearts and hands in action!

Empowering changemakers through workshops for teachers & students. Brains — development of knowledge; hearts — changing attitudes; hands — taking action, leading to positive impact


Who is behind this?

Edyta Tyc

ICAD Foundation


Who is joining forces?

(Ex)change the World (community)


Our partner is a society created by Anna Książek and Andrea Pucci who have done and expedition, called "(Ex)Change the World", gathering people who aim to make world a better place.


Idea pitch

The goal of the project is to work with teachers from the South Silesian region in Poland to develop and implement a curriculum relative to students’ personal impact on the world.

After that students will take part in workshop to root in them active participation in the community and world life and to build a foundation of education in this field. The program will culminate in an event where participants come together to share their ideas and projects.

Where will your project idea take place?

Poland, South Silesia Region, villages and towns in Pszczyna and Bielsko Biała counties.

What is the local challenge?

There are several reasons why this type of project should be implemented in Southern Silesia.

Southern Silesia struggles with some of the highest smog parameters in Europe, widespread littering and limited understanding of diversity due to the homogeneous society in the region and limited social involvement and citizenship.

Despite the high level of urban development and the high density of population in Pszczyna and Bielsko-Biała counties, currently no educational activities which aim to build civil society exist. By providing pupils with understanding of personal impact on the environment and teaching tolerance of diversity we will harness and direct the youthful motivation to build a better, more sustainable and inclusive society in Southern Silesia.

How does your idea strengthen democracy and active citizenship at a local and community level?

Workshops include parts for:
1. Brain– providing knowledge: on the current state of the environment on both local and global level
2. Heart– working on attitudes by building a relation to nature. Understanding that environmental pollution and climate change are not just threats to humans, but also to the entire planet for which we are responsible
3. Hands (Action)– learning that we personally can change reality though grassroots action. Students will be challenged to plan and conduct social campaigns (supported by teachers & trainer). Social campaigns development will culminate in an event where the best ideas will be presented and rewarded. Activities are planned to teach that social engagement matters and brings impact and to develop sustainable initiatives with long-lasting effects

Who are you doing it for?

In an initial stage there will be workshops for teachers in the area. The 2nd stage consists of workshops for students between 13-18 years old and the development of grassroots initiatives to confront local challenges. Finally, an event/picnic will lead to the exchange of ideas and the building a community.
Anna Książek (point 7) will be the main trainer. For the classes with children there will additionally be volunteers working in different parts of the world, with some of them we will be connecting live during the classes. When pupils will be running their campaigns– depending on the concept – there will be meetings with local authorities, activists, and citizens. Workshops materials contain speeches of: activist Greta Thunberg; Prof. Veerabhadran Ramanathan; author Charles Eisenstein.

How do you plan to get there?

1. Printing around 200 copies of the training scenarios (for teachers and schools) in the field of Global Education. Scenarios prepared by trainer - Anna Książek.
2. Workshops for teachers – in the groups of 10 persons, min. 5 different groups will be trained in the field of local and global climate change, personal involvement in making grassroots societal change.
3. Students training – age 13-18 will be trained in the same topics as teachers. Training will be run by the main trainer, supported by teacher and volunteers that were or are working in the countries of Global South with in some of them we will be connecting live during the classes. Social campaigns will be prepared and run by students.
4. Picnic for all participants of the training summarizing all social campaigns.

What are the expected results?

Success can be seen in 2 dimensions
1. Countable:
- 50 teachers will be equipped with knowledge, experience and materials to provide further teaching on the global and local climate change, global diversity and how to initiate attitude change and action towards the change making
- 250-450 will get additional knowledge be running with their teachers’ social campaigns they invented.
- 1 picnic with all training participants summarizing social campaigns.
2. Not countable:
- Group of young people would build life-long perspective on their influence on the surrounding world, they will know that their actions matters. They will take this attitude home and spread it. They will understand that fresh air in winter or clean green areas are their basic rights for which they can ask adults.

How does your initiative contribute to strengthening democracy in Europe?

Democracy needs to work on the lowest level to work - people. In Poland there need to be risen people that understand what it means democracy. And it must happen everywhere – not just in Warsaw, Kraków or other well-developed cities. Silesia is one of the most conservative regions in Poland with very high population density. Workshop will be the seed that would grow with time. In Poland as a part of Europe, so that democracy will be reachable in all points on the European map, ergo in Europe.
In next generations is the hope that “habits” and way of thinking from the communism time will not be remembered. That is why such a project is crucial.

What is your story?

As I mentioned before – I live in Czechowice - Dziedzice, I grew up here, and I am part of the society. I see problems of the area from close. Around 7/8 months of the year air standards are exceeded. For 5 months air quality is over 600% - 800% norms, daily. Green areas have so much garbage on that is difficult to enjoy walks. These are elements of my daily life. I already actively participate in the local Smog Alarm group and local environment support group. I support local authorities with my knowledge and expertise to develop county in the best possible way. And I see, that if we will not start changing way of thinking of citizens, our work is senseless. Teenagers are the ones that are still here and that are open for knowledge and are chance to build a better place.

€ 45000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

€ 55000,-

Total budget

Major expenses

- printing books (materials for teachers and school libaries) - 5 000 EUR
- trainings for teachers - salaries, accomodation, food, transport - 15 000 EUR
- trainings for studetns - salaries, accomodation, food, transport - 15 000 EUR
- final event - picnic - 20 000 EUR

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

What do you think about it? What would you correct there? How would you develop it? Do you have any thoughts/ideas that would help me to develop it?


ICAD Foundation

Idea created on May 27, 2020

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