I am excited to share a wonderful opportunity I had with you. Thanks to a generous personal gift from my Aunt Sue LeTourneau, who is also a board member of Brian's Foundation, I was able to visit and meet with the Nidzica Community Foundation (Nidzicki Fundusz Lokalny) in Poland.
What a special time! We partnered with the Nidzica Foundation 10 years ago and this year we presented our 60th scholarship there, totally $41,000.00.
This was our first visit to meet them and after communicating with them through email for years, I was grateful for the chance to shake their hands, look them in the eyes and see their life.
These two great men picked me up from the airport...
Andrzej (my 'go to' for the past 10 years) and his son Lukasz. They made me feel welcome the minute I stepped off the airplane.
I was able to spend three days with them... they showed me the area (which was beautiful), introduced me to so many remarkable people and on the last day, I had a chance to meet with past and current scholarship recipients and take part in the scholarship presentation.
This is their Foundation headquarters. Isn't it beautiful?
It is in this sweet, collaborative pottery village which included other organizations. Did I mention that I learned how to make pottery for the first time from someone who spoke entirely in Polish?
Oh and umm, this is where I stayed...in the castle hotel, which is from the 13th century!
But one of the most joyous things for me was meeting the recipients and being part of the scholarship presentation.
We have three incredible family sponsors (The Robert D. Nueske Family, Dr. and Sue Smullen and the Weyers Family Foundation)who award two scholarships a year to recipients in the Nidzica area.
Here are the names of this years' recipients and their field of studies.
Mateusz Smoliński Management and production engineering, Main Agriculture-School in Warsaw
Krzysztof Szczephkowski Applied Linguistics, University in Gdansk
Renata Bruzdziak-Finance and Accounting-Main Trade School in Warsaw (School of Economics)
Małgorzata Młyńska--Environmental Protection, University of Warsaw
Daniel Traczewski-Economics/Finance and Accounting/Computer Science and Econometrics, University in Warsaw
Aneta Rudzińska-Materials Engineering, Politechnic in Gdansk
And the man on the left, Jarosaw Pluciennik, was our first scholarship recipient in Poland! He now helps with their foundation.
I am so happy to share a small part of this visit with you. Their kindness, graciousness and positive spirit will remain with me always.