They write about us

Przełom issue 34 (595) published on 26.08.2003


     I would like to share with the readers the wonderful discovery of ¶wietlica Profilaktyczno-Terapeutyczna (Preventive and Therapeutic Community Centre) ran by the Dubaniowskis, located at ul. Broniewskiego 10c. The participants are children aged 5 to 15. The activities are very attractive and varied according to children’s age and interests. Children do arts and crafts with Ms Iwona and later decorate the room with their works. They participate in drama activities guided by Ms Agnieszka. The caretakers also help children with homework and answer any questions they have. The Dubaniowskis raise funds to make the time in the centre attractive for children by organizing trips and competitions. To celebrate the Children’s Day the kids went on a three-day trip to Wisła.

    Children enjoy coming to the centre, they feel important, loved and needed there. The rooms in the centre are clean, nicely arranged, cosy and easy to adapt for different kinds of activities. Children receive a snack during their time at the centre.

    My children have been attending the centre for six months. I can see positive changes in their behaviour. They are quieter, gentle and cheerful.

    Children from various families and backgrounds come to the centre. Most of all they come from poor, pathological or large families. They often have emotional or learning problems and they get support in the centre. The problems of these children and their families are familiar to me. I am myself an addicted person who has been an abstainer for two years. I have been looking for a place where my children could go and spend their time in a nice and safe way. I sometimes experience very hard moments when I am angry and depressed. I am happy that my children do not have to look at me then and suffer together with me. I know that when they go to the centre, they have a good time there. I know that there are other community centres in Chrzanow, but they are overcrowded and it is hard to sign up children there.

    Currently the centre at Broniewskiego 10c is also crowded because many children come here.

    As a mother I am very grateful to all the caretakers for their care and everything they do for the upbringing of our children. They do charity work, give their free time in exchange for children’s happiness and smiles. Thank you for all your love, kindness and warmth given to the children and showing them how to spend free time.

    In these hard times, children are the ones who are in need the most. They often live without love, in poverty, in homes where shouting and violence rule.

    On behalf of the children and their families I would like to thank all the people working in the community centre for their work and all the people of good will and big heart who support the centre with money or gifts.

    I would also like to ask for further support so that the community centre can carry on its work. Children need it very much.

                             (First and last name
                             known to editor)



Przełom issue 34 (595) published on 26.08.2003

    Dorota Olszewik, Agnieszka G±sior, Ryszard Podraza, Halina Orszulak and Marzena Pelcer would like to thank all the organizers, caretakers and sponsors for organizing the summer city camp with its many attractions in ¶wietlica Profilaktyczno-Terapeutyczna (Preventive and Therapeutic Community Centre) in Chrzanow at ul. Broniewskiego 10c. The children and their parents appreciate it very much. Thank you.



Przełom issue 36 (597) published on  9.09.2003

    They do charity work. The best reward for them is children’s happiness and laughter. They show children and teenagers how to use their free time well. In these hard times, they teach honesty.

    A young couple -- Aldona and Piotr Dubaniowskis, decided to run a community centre at the end of last year. They believed that if you want something very much, your dreams come true. And the centre and helping children was their biggest wish. They started looking for an appropriate place. They found it. The local Chrzanow authority pointed them to a building at ul. Broniewskiego 10c that was the right size. The big warehouse of the old Pewex shop was unused. The old grey walls were unwelcoming. But they were not discouraged. Together with friends from Krakow and Olkusz they renovated the rooms. They made them cosy.

- We had a lot of work to do. We had to pull down and build over again. We used construction walls to create additional rooms. As a result we have seven rooms now – says Piotr Dubaniowski.

    But the willingness to work is not enough. The existence of the centre is also possible thanks to human generosity. Building materials have been provided by sponsors.

They do not want to compete

    The community centre opened in mid-March as a branch of Centrum Pomocy Humanitarnej COMPASSION (COMPASSION Humanitarian Aid Centre). The first meeting was attended by about 40 children. Some of them came with parents. The project was accepted but there were some problems too. It was said that the Dubaniowskis’ centre is a competition for afterschool clubs. Some people feared that the activities would be religious in character because the founders are Protestant. There were many ridiculous opinions.

- That’s nonsense. No one here makes children change their denomination. Children like coming here because of the Dubaniowskis’ warmth and kindness -- says Iwona Urban, who works in an afterschool club in one of Chrzanow’s primary schools and does charity work in the centre.

    Agnieszka Szczyrbak is a volunteer too. She is a graduate of the Polish faculty and leads children into the colourful world of drama. The children from the centre have already had their stage debut. Their artistic work was admired by the parents. Decoration from the fabulous show has been displayed in the window. It is a pleasant view for all passers-by and a sign that there is a kingdom of children in the building at Broniewskiego. Anyone who enters the centre is greeted by a cheerful noise, sounds of music, children’s voices and singing. The smell of cake and tea is in the air. Children are never hungry here. Everyone can help themselves to a sweet snack.

They treat it seriously

    It is not an ordinary community centre, but a place where children find faith in themselves, in their strengths and abilities. Every week there is a competition. Children dance, paint, sing and draw. When they want to, they can play a computer game or watch a TV program. The Dubaniowskis and the caretakers teach them something more -- the rules of fair play. They show that success and victory do not come easily, but one needs to work hard to achieve them.

Children know that if they want to get a prize, they have to work for it. They do not take the easy way in competitions. They practise at home before they perform in front of their friends. They treat it seriously -- says Aldona Dubaniowska.

It was cool

    Children and teenagers enthusiastically describe the tree-day trip to Wisła. The trip was supported by Fundacja Izabeli i Adama Małyszów (Izabela and Adam Małysz Foundation). The three days in the mountains were for some children a taste of holidays.

- It was cool. We grilled sausages. Małysz gave us autographs. We didn’t want to go back -- mention Iza and Kasia.

    The centre is open twice a week every Tuesday and Friday from 4.00 pm to 6.00 pm. But in August it had longer opening hours. There was a summer city camp organized so that the summer was more interesting for the children in the town and so that they did not knock about the streets aimlessly.

    So it is not difficult to guess why children are attracted to the centre. The number of children coming to the centre increases. They are both from poverty endangered families as well as those who have no idea how to spend a free afternoon.

They ask for help

    The Dubaniowskis dream of adapting a quiet place for studying. They want the centre to be open every day. This, however, requires money. And the centre barely manages to cover rent and media expenses. In times when it is hard to find sponsors it is not easy to do charity work. The people who have put their whole heart to creating the centre, the children who have found shelter there, they are all asking for help. They ask for financial help to pay the centre’s debts.

Anna Kasprzyk