Social Economy in Poland since last few years is a very important element of national policy, both social and economical wise. The best confirmation of that statment is a fact that in last financial perspective of European Union (2007-2013), supporting of social economy had an appreciable budget and in National Programme was a special priority dedicated to social economy as the instument to fight with social exclusion and poverity.

Moreover in the summer of 2014 Polish Government approved a very important strategic document: The Nationa Programme of Social Economy Development (KPRES). What have to be pointed out is a fact that Polish Goverment not only approved this strategic document but as well provided the financial support for its implementation with a support of European Union Founds in new financial perspective 2014-2020.

The primary objective of the KPRES is as follows:

In 2020, the social economy is an important growth factor of employment, social cohesion
and the development of social capital.
While the strategic objective is:
By 2020, social economy entities will become an important element of activation of vulnerable people on
the labour market and a provider of services of general interest which operate in self-government communities.
The whole document in English can be downloaded here:

Even though the document has more than 100 pages and is not easy to read publication, full of legal statments, abbreviations and  references to specific Polish and EU regulations it brings a focus on social economy as an important element of the common growth of Polish society.
What is also importnat to mention except of legal definintions and social economy history, KPRES is providing very detailed description of particular directions of public engagement and the basic premises of the implementation system and the required finance scheme suitable for the development of the Programme. KPRES is very clearly shows an important role of The Network of The Social Economy Supporting Centers (OWES) which should provid hight quality services like advisory, coaching, training courses, local animation and financial support for social enterprises.

According to the “KPRES” only intitution or consorcium of institutions, called further as OWES, fulfilling the stringent requirements can apply for regional grants provided in new european financial perspective for Poland in 2014-2020.

The whole process of meassuring the hight quality standard of Supporting Centers was prepared by a group of experts (Accredication Committee) and implemented by external auditors in the summer of 2015 to secure the continuity of Supporting Centers services. During very detailed audits more than 50 OWES received the Accreditation and could apply for grands from Regional Development Programmes supported by European Social Founds and continue activities dedicated to promoting and supporting social economy, encluding providing financial and non-financial support for potencial social enterprises.

Unfortunatelly due to the political changes in Poland at 31th of December 2015 the whole process was “frozen” or at least slowed down and all given in 2015 accreditation were revoked by the Minister of the Family, Labour and Social Policy.

The reaction of the OWES community and other institutions dedicated to social economy development was very fast and effective. Fortunatelly the Ministry of the Family, Labour and Social Policy took all needed steps to re-open the process of Accreditations. In the cooperation with Accreditation Committee, The Ministry of the Family, Labour and Social Policy in last 3 month re-accredited OWES’s from 12 regions in Poland so only 4 voivodeship have left.

It means that support for social economy development in Poland is moving with full steam ahead!