TFN International in Miskolc
On 26th May we joined our friends in Hungary for an event in Miskolc, in the north-east of the country, the first of its kind outside of Budapest. Hosted in a beautiful domed building in the town centre by the recently-formed Térerő Community Foundation, the event raised over £6,700 and brought together more than 80 people to celebrate three fantastic local social change projects.
The projects ranged from local heritage education to breast cancer awareness to a theatre group helping young people to tackle social issues. On top of the £6,700 raised – well over the target for the evening – all of the projects received offers of pro-bono and volunteer support from local residents. The support they raised will enable them all to effect significant change in the local area. And what’s more, the event gave them a platform to get more people from the community involved in their causes.
Our partners in Hungary are operating in a challenging political and social climate, but continue to work hard for change through local action. Over the last five years, Kozos Alapon (Hungary’s Community Foundation Support Programme) has worked to develop Community Foundations across the country and has so far succeeded in helping four to establish themselves, with several more in the process. Despite, or perhaps in part because of, the challenging situation, it is an exciting time for this movement and in many ways there are as many opportunities as there are challenges.
In a country where the space for civil society is becoming narrower by the week, events such as these championing inclusiveness and tolerance seem ever more important. It was a brilliant reminder of the power of the collective.