On December 5, 2023, a virtual study visit entitled “Social and solidarity economy in Lower Silesia – legal framework and good practices” took place in Lower Silesia, Poland. The hosting partners were the Regional Development Agency “ARLEG” S.A. (ARLEG, Legnica) and the Lower Silesian Centre for Social Policy (DOPS, Wrocław).
The visit was attended by partners from Italy, Polish, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia and Austria.
During the visit, the legal framework of the social and solidarity economy at national and regional level in Poland was presented together with legal form, activities and mission of social enterprises.
A film entitled “The Social Face of Business” was shown to the audience, in which the idea of social enterprises and several examples of good practices of social economy entities and institutions supporting this sector were presented.
Ms. Paulina Ograbisz was invited to participate in the study visit as representative of local stakeholder and representative of PANATO BAG – a network of social economy enterprises employing people with disabilities. Together, under the brand “Panato Bag”, they produce bags, backpacks and advertising accessories for the domestic and foreign markets. Project partners had the opportunity to learn about the conditions for the establishment and cooperation of a network of social economy enterprises that have been successfully running a social “business” since 2017, creating not only a high-quality product, but also high-quality jobs for people at risk of social exclusion.
During the visit, the activities of the “Partnership for the Barycz Valley” association for the development of education, tourism, local producers and natural monuments of the Barycz Valley area were also presented. The Association is an example of a prosperous public-private partnership in Lower Silesia, which consists of 8 municipalities on the border of two provinces (Lower Silesia and Greater Poland) and about 200 social economy entities.
The meeting ended with the exchange of observations and comments of the partners participating in the study visit in the form of a joint SWOT analysis of examples of good practices from Polish.