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”.

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U.S. CENSUS INFORMATION

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. 

Polish American Congress-Michigan Resolutions 2022

Polish American Congress-Michigan Resolutions 2022

The following Resolutions were voted on by the PAC-MI membership at the Aril 23, 2022 Annual Meeting:

 

 

  1. Whereas, We recognize and observe the following significant 2020-2022 anniversaries locally:    100thAnniversary of St’ Lad’s Church, 100th Anniversary city of Hamtramck, 95th Anniversary of Transfiguration Church, 90th Anniversary of Polish Varieties Radio, 85th Anniversary of Friends of Polish Art, 65th Anniversary of Wieliczka Dancers, 60th Anniversary of Gwiazda Dancers, 50th Anniversary of Adam Mickiewicz Polish School, 50th Anniversary of Polish Night at Detroit Tigers,  50th Anniversary of PAC MI Scholarship Fund Program, 45th Anniversary of Klub Polonia in Wyandotte, 40th Anniversary of Centennial Dancers,

          25th Anniversary of Polanie Dancers, and

Whereas, significant anniversaries are celebrated nationwide; 140thAnniversary of Polish National Alliance, 135th Anniversary of the Polish Falcons of America, 115 years of Polish Falcons of America, Nest 86, 40th Anniversary of Solidarity Movement,

Therefore, we congratulate all these entities and wish them continued success;

  1. Whereas, in 2020 we celebrated the 100th Anniversary of Battle of Warsaw, Cud nad Wisłą, therefore we congratulate the PAC-MI for honoring that anniversary with written material promoting the Poland’s victory over Soviet Russia in 1920,

 

Whereas, in 2021 Poland celebrated the 230th Anniversary of the Polish Constitution of 1791, therefore we acknowledge Polish American Congress-Michigan Division for commemorating the anniversary with ceremonies supported by printed promotional material,

Therefore, we laud the Michigan Division in all efforts to document and promote Polish history;

  1. Whereas, Ukraine is fighting to defend its independence,

Therefore, we stand with the people of Ukraine in solidarity and we commend Polish citizens, worldwide Polonia, and the Polish government for extending significant help in their dire need, and as Poland’s President noted, that we will continue stand by them as they fight for freedom, independence, and peace;

  1. We continue to anticipate that the present administration, led by US President Joseph Biden, will serve the Polish American community well, will be mindful of Poland’s security as an independent nation, and will support her good standing in the free world;
  2. We renew our appeal to Polish Americans, to be informed and actively involved in social and political issues of the United States, and in efforts promoting Poland’s and Polish best interests, e.g. defending Poland’s good name;
  3. We renew our appeal to members of Polonian organizations, as well as to anyone who is not currently a part of organized Polonia, to actively support the work of the Polish American Congress, locally and nationally, and to join and become actively involved in work that can benefit us all and our community,
  4. We renew our appeal to parents to raise their children in a patriotic spirit through participation in Polish language programs and membership in youth organizations that foster and nurture our Polish values and instill an appreciation for our rich heritage, thus increasing our children’s effectiveness to compete in American society. We continue to support efforts to promote books, articles, films, and materials, which foster the good name and true history of Poland and our heritage;
  5. We again send our best wishes to our local Polish media, for continued success in their efforts to keep Polonia informed and best serve our community: Polish Weekly and Polish Varieties Radio; and we appeal to Polonia to actively support these media and their sponsors.
  6. We renew our appeal to all who are of Polish descent, and to those who are supportive of our heritage, to stand united and in solidarity in promoting and protecting the good name and rich heritage of Poland and the Polish American community, thus enriching American life;
  7. Whereas we gratefully acknowledge Henrietta Nowakowski’s efforts in research of Polish Soldiers of World War I – Blue Army buried at the Holy Sepulcher Cemetery in Southfield where, together with the Polish government (Institute of National Remembrance) and the Polish Mission of Orchard Lake, they will be honored for their service with granite crosses and a large monument,

Therefore, we express Polonia’s gratitude for these combined efforts in bringing this project to fruition;

  1. Whereas Orchard Lake Seminary welcomes its new Rector, Father Bernard Witek,

Therefore, we extend our best wishes for success and congratulate him, and we thank Father Jacek Kowal for his work on behalf of OLS and St. Cyril and Methodius Seminary and wish him continued success;

  1. Whereas, Thomas Wolski and Anna Huk Glaeser, who each served 12 years as officers, are leaving the Executive Board of the PAC MI

Therefore, we gratefully acknowledge their many years for the betterment of our organization.

Resolutions Committee Barbara Lemecha, Henrietta Nowakowski and Stella Szczesny

PAC MI ~General Membership Meeting!

                        Polish American Congress MI DIV.

General Membership Meeting for all Members and Delegates

Saturday, December 3, 2022, promptly at 10:00 am

                        At PAC MI Headquarters

                   11333 Jos Campau, Hamtramck

                               Tel.313-365-9400

Holiday Reception following the meeting

                      (Compliments of PAC-MI)

                                         

Please note free street parking in December

50th Anniversary of the PAC of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc.

50th Anniversary of the PAC of Michigan

Scholarship Fund, Inc.

The 50th Anniversary of the PAC of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc. took place on Wednesday August 3, 2022 at Stitts Post in Dearborn Hts., Michigan. Those in attendance had an enjoyable time with delicious Polish food cooked by Halina and her staff. Each guest received a goodie bag filled with items donated by PRCUA, PNA and Stella Szczesny. They also had the opportunity to win a variety of prizes.

Over 100 former scholarship recipients were invited to write a few words about themselves which was included in a brief history of the PAC of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc. This book was compiled by Joann Ozog, Recording Secretary. Board Chairman, Ann Bankowski introduced those present (Taylor Withers Beauchamp, Christopher Ozog, Leonard Zabawski and Alec Westphal) and presented each with a plaque of acknowledgement and an inspirational book, “Life is a Journey”. Joann Ozog also wrote this book which is about the many challenges one encounters in their life’s journey.

Wally Ozog, President, then introduced John Swidinski, President of the PA Federal Credit Union. For many years, the credit union donated $500.00 to the scholarship fund. On this special Anniversary year, the PA Federal Credit Union received a plaque of appreciation for their years of interest and support of the future leaders of Polonia.

The 2022 PAC of Michigan Scholarship recipients were then introduced. Christopher Adamczyk, Vice-President, introduced Ian Melnyk who is attending MSU; Bob Bielenda, Treasurer, introduced Grace Ozog who is attending U of M; Member Rick Lapham introduced Caroline Raczkowski, a DePaul University student. Each received $2,000.00, a plaque of Recognition and the inspirational book, “Life is a Journey”.

A special “thank you” is extended to those who joined in the festivities of this milestone anniversary. Without them, this celebration would not have taken place.

We also thank the former scholarship recipients who attended the dinner and also, to those who took the time to write a brief resume for our anniversary book. They are part of the history of the PAC of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc. and should not be forgotten.

Lastly, we appreciate everyone who donated to the “Invest in the Future” scholarship appeal. It is because of these donors that we are able to continue to give scholarships. Hopefully, the former scholarship recipients will remember who made a difference for them to attain their degree and they will reciprocate and give back so that future students will benefit from it.

Words that a friend of mine often used and I would like to end my article with is, “If you give with your eyes open, you will be happy and the PAC of Michigan Scholarship Fund, Inc. will continue to exist for another 50 years.

Submitted by Joann S. Ozog (Recording Secretary)

CALL TO ARTISTS

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

DEAR PRESIDENTS OF PAC DIVISIONS:

PLEASE TAKE PROMPT ACTION ON THIS LEGISLATIVE ALERT TO ENACT HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES RESOLUTION 664 ON POLAND

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

PAC CONSTITUTION DAY FLYERS

‘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

SCHOLARSHIP FUND 2022-2023

Download 2022 Scholarship Application (PDF)

GRANTS AVAILABLE (2022-2023)

MICHAEL & HELEN BEDNARCZYK GRANT
Available for Business Administration, Finance or Accounting areas of study.

CZECHOWSKI GRANT
Available for any major area of study.

FRANK & SOPHIA FILIPEK GRANT
No specific major area of study or criteria has been established with the donor.

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

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

JOHN AND VICTORIA  KUSHEL GRANT
Available for a major study in the Nursing profession.

DR. STANLEY A. OZOG GRANT
Available for a major study in Osteopathic Medicine, pre-Medicine or the Nursing profession.

EUGENE KRESKA GRANT
Available for a major study in the Engineering profession.

WALLACE AND JOANN OZOG GRANT
Available for a major study in the Religious Formation profession.

POLISH AMERICAN CONGRESS OF MICHIGAN SCHOLARSHIP FUND ACCOUNT

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

CRITERIA USED IN EVALUATING CANDIDATES

  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

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:

  • 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.

SCHOLARSHIPS ARE FOR TUITION AND BOOKS ONLY

  • 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