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Gift a Poem

Invitation to participate in the “Gift a Poem” campaign on World Poetry Day March 21st

For the second time, the Polish National Commission for UNESCO, ASPnet Poland and the Zbigniew Herbert Foundation, in cooperation with the ASPnet International Coordination Unit are inviting member schools around the world to organize “Gift a Poem” campaign as a form of commemoration of World Poetry Day on 21 March 2024.

As a reminder, the 2023 ‘Gift a Poem’ campaign was conducted as a joint ASPnet activity as part of the celebration of the UNESCO Associated Schools Network 70th anniversary. The campaign was very well received and a great success. Reports were sent from 14 countries on four continents and are available at www.giftapoem.pl.

Many countries have expressed interest in holding the Gift a Poem campaign again in 2024. This year has been declared by UNESCO as the year to celebrate the centenary of the Polish poet Zbigniew Herbert. The poet whose gesture inspired the Gift a Poem campaign: Herbert offered handwritten Poem Letters to his friends, artists, and people important to him.

We believe that the act of offering someone words of poetry is a thoroughly human one: a form of friendly co-presence, spiritual support, of consolation as well as a means of sustaining hope and build peace. That is why we wish to encourage students participating in this initiative to find someone and gift that person a poem. Not only to people in their closest circle (family, friends, neighbours and acquaintances), but also in places where a good word is so often needed – in nursing homes, retirement homes, orphanages, community centers, homeless shelters, hospitals, etc.

We invite you to view the “Gift a Poem” webinar (conducted on February 12th), during which the organizers of the campaign presented the “Gift a Poem” website, discussed organizational details and relevant materials. The video also includes testimonies of coordinators and participants of the 2023 campaign and a profile of Zbigniew Herbet, Polish poet whose birth centenary is celebrated this year by UNESCO.

To view the webinar click on the link: Gift a Poem / webinars


Małgorzata Herbich
Polish ASPnet National Coordinator
Polish National Commission for UNESCO
e-mail: m.herbich@unesco.pl

Maria Dzieduszycka
President/Executive Director
The Zbigniew Herbert Foundation

Zbigniew Herbert, sketch from a painting by Gerard ter Borch “Woman Writing a Letter”
UNESCO 100th anniversary of the birth of Zbigniew Herbert
UNESCO National Coordination Associated Schools Network
UNESCO Polish National Commission

“Gift a Poem” campaign| social campaign of the Zbigniew Herbert Foundation 

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