Polish American Congress Michigan Division Meets with Michigan National Guard Soldiers

Polish American Congress-MI

Meets with Michigan National Guard Soldiers

On September 8, 2020 a 15-member team from PAC-MI presented an orientation program to 69 Michigan National Guard soldiers, whose unit is being deployed to serve 10 months with NATO security forces in Poland. Upon receiving the invitation this summer from the unit’s commander, Captain Robert McNamara, our Division went to work to prepare a day of informational presentations about Poland- tourist, cultural, historical, language, music, social, and political- to help better prepare them for this experience abroad. Most of the soldiers had not travelled beyond Michigan before.  Each one received an informational folder covering many of the topics presented, as well as a bag of interesting reading about Poland and all things Polish, with pamphlets, brochures, and colorful reference materials.

The wide-ranging program included expert speakers with power point presentations, videos, audience participation, music, and sharing of personal experiences.  Among some of our presenters were: WSU Polish Studies professor, Dr. Alina Klin, who travels regularly to Poland with her students; the Honorary Consul for Poland, Richard Walawender; Stella Szczesny, from PNA and our Division’s National Director, who gave an interesting comparison from her visits to Poland of life under Communist times to changes and vast improvements in Poland today; Teresa Wiacek, of the Polish Scouting Organization, who prepared an interesting array of representative Polish music; and  (Retired) Col. Chester Szczotka who shared his life journey from a pre-war childhood in Poland, to surviving the Gulag in Soviet Russia, followed by growing up in Uganda, England, immigrating to Texas and Michigan, completing university studies and serving in the US Army Reserves, achieving the rank of colonel. We even had a member of the Polish Winged Hussars Re-Enactment Group visit in impressive full gear, sharing the strategies and significant contributions of these bold warriors to Polish history.

The soldiers were able to view interesting and informative displays about Polish culture and history prepared by our Executive VP, Barbara Lemecha. Together with the presentations, they were able to learn, probably for the first time, about Poland’s past and present, and what has influenced and shaped the country and the nation’s character.

The day was highlighted with a delicious luncheon featuring Polish style cuisine from Polish Village Café in Hamtramck and freshly baked pączki for dessert donated by Bożek Market. The afternoon’s program featured a motivational speech by (Ret.) Colonel Andrew Raczkowski, who impressed on the soldiers the importance of the mission for which they were being sent.

Our Division is especially grateful to all who participated, presented, donated, and lent helping hands to realize this unique project and opportunity. PAC-MI received a commemorative recognition plaque from the Michigan National Guard in appreciation of our efforts.

COVID-19 Update #2 to Polonia from Polish Consulate in Detroit

Dear Friends of Polonia!

I hope this message finds you and your family in good health. I am writing to update Michigan’s Polonia of some useful information in these challenging times.

As promised, I am providing some information for our Polish and Polish-American businesses, in order to spread the word how they should take advantage of the huge amounts of money that our federal government and state and local governments have made available to businesses and to pay their employees during this time.

Please excuse the fact that I am including certain information I authored from my law firm, but I am providing this to Polonia as a free of charge resource to make sure we take advantage of what is available to us. I am happy to answer any questions from any Polish or Polish-American business free of charge, to assist in applying for money (but don’t tell my other clients).

  1. Federal Government Financial Assistance. The U.S. Congress passed, and the President signed, the “CARES Act”. This provides two, very substantial financial aid programs to small business (under 500 employees). One program provides money that does not even have to repaid under certain conditions for businesses to pay their workers, rent, mortgage, utilities and debt interest. The other program offers very low interest rate long-term loans for businesses to pay working capital. Again, this is almost like getting free money to pay 2 months’ worth of a company’s operating expenses. Importantly, it is also available to sole proprietors, independent contractors, startups and very small businesses.  Polonia needs to take advantage of this!  Attached is memo in Polish and English that explains the two programs and how to apply.  Applications can be done online and through participating lenders and banks.
  2. State and Local Financial Assistance.  There are also smaller programs available through the State of Michigan (MEDC) and certain counties (e.g., Macomb and Oakland). The details of these programs are available on the website listed below.
  3. Website of Polonia Angels for Further Information.  Several of us have been in the process of launching an investor group to support Polonia businesses by providing investment funds. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 outbreak has forced us to pause this initiative, but in the meantime, we are building up a financial resource center for Polonia to understand the financial help they can apply for and receive. Please refer to: https://www.poloniaangels.com/small-business-relief-program-resourcesThis website will be updated on a regular basis.

Finally, let me also remind you of the items I previously wrote to you about, and make another special request that you feel free to bring to my attention any Polish citizens who may need special attention or assistance in these times:

  1. U.S. Census Update. While the deadline to complete the 2020 U.S. Census questionnaire has been extended somewhat, please encourage your friends to complete online now. Instructions are set forth below (in Polish and English). See below for more details.
  2. Polish Citizens Returning to Poland.  Polish citizens in Michigan seeking to return to Poland, can find details about the Polish Government’s program through Polish LOT Airlines to take them back. Details and arrangements can be found and made online at this website: Link to LotDoDomu
  3. Polish Citizens Wishing to Prolong their Stay in US. This website has details: link to website
  4. Polish Citizens Needing Urgent Assistance. We will be working with our Polonian organizations and churches to coordinate assistance programs to our elderly and most vulnerable. In the meantime, if you are aware of any elderly Polish citizens who have nobody to care for them, or become hospitalized, please let me know.

Remain safe and know that our prayers are with you all,


Richard A. Walawender

Honorary Consul

Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Detroit
150 West Jefferson, Suite 2500
Detroit, Michigan 48226 (USA)

T +1.313.496.7600


This electronic message and all of its contents and attachments contain information from the Consulate of the Republic of Poland in Detroit. which may be privileged, confidential or otherwise protected from disclosure.  The information is intended to be for the addressee only.  If you are not the addressee, then any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of this message, or its contents or any of its attachments, is prohibited.  If you have received this electronic message in error, please notify us immediately and destroy the original message and all copies.  To unsubsribe to emails, please reply with the message “unsubscribe”.



Not much time remaining to complete and submit U.S. 2020 Census Questionnaire Online. Each home should have received an invitation to participate in the 2020 Census and to complete the 2020 Census questionnaire online, at https://2020census.gov/ and in Polish at https://2020census.gov/pl.html  Assistance is available in Polish or English by calling 1-844-479-2020. In completing the Census 2020 Questionnaire, remember to include your Polish ethnic origin.

Weź udział w Spisie Ludności online! Nie zostało dużo czasu! Kwestionariusz w wersji online jest już dostępny na stronie internetowej https://2020census.gov/pl.html  W celu uzyskania pomocy dotyczącej Spisu Ludności 2020 lub wypełnienia go telefonicznie zadzwoń pod numer 844-479-2020. Połączenia odbierane są także w języku polskim! Wypełniając kwestionariusz Census 2020, pamiętaj, żeby w odpowiedzi na pytanie numer 9 wpisać: POLISH. 



Dear PAC Members and Polonia Friends!

We invite you to the annual patriotic celebration of Polish Soldiers Day, this year
at Orchard Lake on Sunday, August 14, 2022, with a Polish mass at 1:00pm in the St. John Paul II Shrine Chapel.

The mass will be celebrated by Fr. Bernard Witek, enhanced by the beautiful Filarets Choir. A short program will follow at the end of mass. All are warmly invited to the Dining Hall for a Polish dinner ($15 donation) after mass. There will be patriotic displays and exhibits.

The event is organized by the Polish American Veterans Association, Polish
American Congress-MI, Club Filarets, and the Polish Institute of Culture and Research at Orchard Lake as hosts.

On behalf of the organizers, I sincerely invite all Polonia organizations, Polish veterans, and Scouts, and those of Polonia who especially value and appreciate our paying tribute to significant moments of Polish history and share patriotic pride in celebrating our mutual heritage and legacy.

Serdecznie zapraszamy!

Ann Bankowski, President

Polish American Congress Michigan Division

Ph.:(313) 365-9400



URGENT LEGISLATIVE ALERT – Please call your congressperson by June 9!



With few exceptions, today Poland and the Poles are receiving overall very positive coverage by the mass media.  This is because Poland is playing a key role in providing a haven for Ukrainian War Refugees, who are largely women and children. With American public opinion in this 2022 election year now favorably disposed toward our ancestral country, the Polish American Congress needs to work hard to enact House Resolution 664 (H.Res. 664):  Commemorating the anniversary of the 1939 invasions of Poland by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union and recognizing the importance of the Republic of Poland as a stalwart NATO ally of the United States.

To date, this resolution drafted by the PAC Long Island Division and sponsored by Congressman Thomas Suozzi (D-NY3) has received five sponsors.  The PAC’s Washington, DC Office needs your help to identify at least 12 more members of Congress who may agree to co-sponsor H.R. 664. The PAC K Street Office will then call on the members of Congress whom you identify who have NOT YEY AGREED TO CO-SPONSOR H. RES. 664 after having received requests to do so from your divisions’ members.

Please ask the members of your division to phone, or visit, the District Offices of your States’ members of the House of Representatives and ask them to state their names and addresses to show that they are constituents.

Next, request that the members of your division ask their Member of the House of Representatives to agree to co-sponsor H.R. 664, and let the representative know that her/his Polish American constituents will remember on Election Day 2022 whether, or not, the member agreed to be a co-sponsor.

Finally, please email me the names of the members of the House of Representatives your members either phoned, or visited, and let me know the names of those who agreed to co-sponsor H.R. 664. I will visit the Washington, DC offices of those who DID NOT ALREADY AGREE to co-sponsor H.R. 664 after having received from your divisions’ members requests to do so.  Therefore, I would be grateful to Division presidents if they would email to me BEFORE JUNE 9,2022 a list of all members of the House of Representatives contacted by their members and the names of those who agreed to co-sponsor H. R. 664.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to your key role in enacting H.Res. 664.

Best regards,

John Czop

May 3 Constitution Day


‘Solidarity’ ~ Pamiętamy~


Informacja prasowa!

Prezeska Kongresu Polonii Amerykańskiej Pani Anna Bańkowska, potwierdziła projekt filmowania, głównie Solidarnościowców, w siedzibie Kongresu w Hamtramcku.

Filmowanie odbędzie się w SOBOTĘ, 9 KWIETNIA, zaczynając od 1:00 pp.

Celem zachowania pamięci i wspomnień wokół wydarzeń, będzie to ważną lekcję dla przyszłych pokoleń.

Osoba, która będzie przedstawiać pytania będzie, co najmniej 2 metry z dala od uczestnika i z maską.  Uczestnicy filmowania będą bez masek, z mikrofonikiem przyczepionym do koszulki.

Jak zwykle, filmowanie będzie przeprowadzone w obu językach, w tym dwujęzykowym projekcie.  Dziennikarka Pani profesor Alicja Karlić przedstawi nowatorskie pytania.

Reżyserka Bożena Bienias zaczęła filmować z operatorem w 2013 roku, uczestników drugiej wojny światowej.  Z dziesięć uczestników brało udział z różnych cześć Polski walczącej.  Nie było uczestnika z partyzantki, więc gdyby był ktoś zainteresowany, bardzo proszę się zgłosić.  Pracując z nauczycielką, fragmenty z tego filmowania są w trakcie opracowania i przygotowania razem z curriculum dla uczniów/studentów.

Zdjęcia pamiątkowe oraz pamiątki można przywieść dla skanowania na miejscu w Kongresie.  Wszystko Państwo odbierzecie za raz po czasie filmowania.

Ponieważ musimy rozplanować czas filmowania, uprzejmie prosimy skontaktować się z Panią Bożeną:

Imię ________________________________

Nazwisko ____________________________ email________________________________

# tel._________________________________

Miejsce mieszkania w tym czasie historycznym ___________________.


Do usłyszenia!

Bożena Bienias 989/494-9874bieniasbozena365@gmail.com

‘Solidarity Remembered’

Press Release

Ms. Bożena Bienias, in cooperation with the Polish American Congress of Michigan, organizes the action of recording the memories of emigrants, especially the so-called “Solidarity emigrants”.

If you are one of them, if you have something interesting to share, if you would like to record your memories, your life, talk about the beginnings of life in the United States, please read the attached leaflet and contact Ms. Bożena Bienias


Download 2022 Scholarship Application (PDF)


Available for Business Administration, Finance or Accounting areas of study.

Available for any major area of study.

No specific major area of study or criteria has been established with the donor.

Available for any major area of study, however, candidate must be proficient in the Polish language and actively participating in Polonia.

No specific major area of study or criteria has been established with the donor.

Available for a major study in the Nursing profession.

Available for a major study in Osteopathic Medicine, pre-Medicine or the Nursing profession.

Available for a major study in the Engineering profession.

Available for a major study in the Religious Formation profession.


Grants are established by the Board of Directors as funds are available.


  1. Scholastic Average
  2. Polonian Involvement – include the last two years
  3. Community Service – include the last two years
  4. Financial Need of Student
  5. Thank You Letter & Acceptance of Award


  • College freshman are not eligible for scholarship.  Available for only full time students.
  • All applicants must be residents of Michigan.
  • Application must be completed in its entirety.
  • Verification of current grade point average must be attached.
  • Verification of Polonian involvement must be included.
  • Verification of community service must be included.
  • Verification of financial need must be included.


  • Checks will be made out to the College or University.  Completed applications become the property of the Polish American Congress of Michigan Scholarship Fund. All information submitted on the application is considered confidential and will not be duplicated and only be discussed by the Scholarship’s designated judges and officers.
  • Your completed application is due NO LATER THAN APRIL 1 OF EACH YEAR

Completed application must be mailed or delivered to:

Polish American Congress of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc.
11333 Jos. Campau
Hamtramck, MI 48212-3038

Download 2022 Scholarship Application (PDF)

Veritable Organizations for Donations to Help Ukrainians

Veritable Organizations for Donations to Help Ukrainians

  1. Polish American Congress https://pac1944.org Donate directly on web page to Polonia for Ukraine national fund drive by pay pal or credit card; all information available on PAC web page.
  2. Polish American Congress-Michigan pacmi.org Donate by sending checks made out to PAC with memo Polonia for Ukraine to PAC-MI office: 11333 Jos. Campau Hamtramck, MI 48212, Radiothon being held locally Saturday, March 12, 2022 on Polish Varieties Radio (690am) from 8:30-12:00, allowing people to call: 248-557-3300 (only during program) or 313-365-9400 (PAC office), to declare pledges for the national PAC fund drive. In the coming month or more, all checks collected will be forwarded to the national PAC office Treasurer, along with one check with combined amount of any cash donations, indicating they are being offered for the Polonia for Ukraine campaign from Polonia in Michigan. The national PAC is sending collected donations from Polonia for Ukraine to 2 organizations: Council to Aid Ukrainians and Polish Red Cross.
  3. Link to Orchard Lake Polish Mission-Ukrainian Relief Fund  link

All donations made to the Polish Mission – Ukrainian Relief Fund are tax-deductible charitable contributions and will be sent to the five Polish charities recommended by Polish government with links below:

Polskie Centrum Pomocy Międzynarodowej (PCPM)/Polish Center for Medical Help– https://pcpm.org.pl/en/about-   us/support-us (info in English)

Polska Akcja Humanitarna (PAH)/Polish Humanitarian Action

https://www.pah.org.pl/en/donate/ (info in English)

Caritas Polska – https://caritas.pl/formularz/

Fundacja Ocalenie/Rescue Foundation               https://crm.ocalenie.org.pl/civicrm/contribute/transact?reset=1&id=3&lang=en (info in English)

Polski Czerwony Krzyż (PCK)/Polish Red Cross – https://pck.pl/na-pomoc-      ukrainie/ (info also in English)

Polska Misja Medyczna /Polish Medical Missionhttps://pmm.org.pl/en/ukraine-urgent-medical-aid (info in English)


  1. Kosciuszko Foundation: The Kosciuszko Foundation| 212-734-2130 |thekf.org

“Michigan Polonia for Ukraine”


Dear Polonia!

On Saturday March 12, 2022, Polish American Congress-Michigan will be holding a radiothon, in cooperation with Polish Varieties Radio Program, WNZK-AM, during the radio program from 8:30am-12:00pm, to garner support for the Polonia for Ukraine campaign initiated by the national Polish American Congress for humanitarian and refugee needs in Poland and Ukraine.


Call in pledges will be announced on air. Donors may call during the program time to the station, 248-557-3300, or to the PAC-MI office, 313-365-9400. Checks should be made out to Polish American Congress (or PAC) with the memo: Polonia for Ukraine. During the coming weeks checks may be dropped off or mailed to the PAC-MI office, 11333 Jos. Campau Hamtramck MI 48212. All cash collected will be forwarded to the national PAC treasurer in one PAC-MI check, as a donation to this cause from Polonia in Michigan.


All monies donated are designated for refugee and humanitarian relief needs carried out by 2 veritable organizations: Council on Aid to Ukrainians and the Polish Red Cross.


Thanking you in advance for your support!

Ann Bankowski, President




Droga Polonio!

W sobotę, 12.marca 2022, podczas programu Polskich Rozmaitości, WNZK-AM, 8:30-12:00pp, Kongres Polonii w Michigan przeprowadzi radioton na krajową zbiórkę Polonia dla Ukrainy, sponsorowaną przez główną organizację, Kongres Polonii Amerykańskiej, w celu pomocy w wysiłkach humanitarnych i uchodźctwu w Polsce i w Ukrainie. Wszystkie zebrane datki zostaną przekazane do głównego KPA i potem przesłane w pełni na rzecz pracy Council on Aid to Ukrainians i Polskiego Czerwonego Krzyża-dwóch wiarygodnych organizacji pomocy.


Zgłoszenia podczas programu zostaną podane na eterze, a nazwiska dawców ukażą się (w miarę możności) na stronie internetowej KPA: https://pac1944.org. Numer na stację radiową: 248-557-3300 oraz do biura KPA: 313-365-9400.


Czeki prosimy wystawić na Polish American Congress (PAC) z dopiskiem Polonia for Ukraine i przesłać do wydziałowego biura Kongresu, 11333 Jos. Campau Hamtramck MI 48212. Wszelką zebraną gotówkę prześlemy w następnych tygodniach, w jednym czeku, od naszego wydziału do głównego KPA, z notatką że jest to donacja od Polonii w Michigan.


Z góry serdecznie dziękujemy za wsparcie tej inicjatywy!

Anna Bańkowska, Prezes

Kongres Polonii-Michigan



PAC spearheads Fund Drive to help

In this inconceivable moment in our history, we are appealing for your help for Ukraine!

Let us open our hearts to those whose lives have been suddenly shattered by the tragedy of war.

Helping refugees requires the involvement of enormous human resources and immeasurable support.

We appeal to the members of the Polish American community and the community at-large for compassion, goodwill and specifically, financial aid.

Be a part of a greater action of solidarity with Ukraine and join the fundraising campaign organized by the Polish American Congress.

“The measure of your humanity is the magnitude of your concern for another human being.”

Rev. Mieczysław Maliński

W tej nadzwyczajnej dla świata chwili wołamy o Twoją pomoc dla Ukrainy!

Otwórzmy serca dla Tych, których życie runęło nagle w wojennych gruzach.

Pomoc dla uchodźców wymaga zaangażowania ogromnych sił ludzkich i wsparcia materialnego.

Apelujemy do członków polonijnej społeczności, o Waszą wrażliwość, dobrą wolę i konkretną pomoc finansową.

Bądź częścią wielkiej akcji solidarności z Ukrainą i dołącz do zbiórki funduszy, organizowanej przez Kongres Polonii Amerykańskiej.

„Miarą Twojego człowieczeństwa jest wielkość Twojej troski o drugiego człowieka”.

  1. Mieczysław Maliński

Stand in solidarity with Ukrainian refugees. Open your hearts and donate here today:






PAC Statement on Situation in Ukraine

PAC Statement on Situation in Ukraine