The action “Meal for a Doctor” (#MealForADoctor) was organised on the initiative of Patryk Wachowiec, legal analyst of the FOR (Civil Development Forum) Foundation and Marcin Mycielski, Member of the Board of Directors of the Open Dialogue Foundation (ODF) on 15 March 2020, in the face of the global COVID-19 pandemic that put, among others, the Polish health service in an unprecedented situation. The so-called lockdown introduced in Poland on the night of 13/14 March 2020 forced the immediate closure of restaurants, which from then on could only operate by delivering ordered meals. In these circumstances, the idea of supporting doctors, nurses, paramedics and all other healthcare professionals by providing them with free meals at the workplace was born. A secondary, yet important intention of the originators was the desire to help the small catering industry survive the crisis.
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Today, Rafał Matouszek, Logistics Coordinator at the Open Dialogue Foundation, visited Silesia – his home region. During the special mission, Rafał met with the management of City Hospital No. 4 in Gliwice in order to sign a donation agreement for the amount of over 58,000 zlotys that remained after settlements with restaurants as part of the #PosiłekDlaLekarza (eng. MealForADoctor) campaign. The campaign was carried out together with the FOR (Civil Development Forum) Foundation and the Niskie Składki (Low Contributions) and Spontaniczny Sztab Obywatelski (Spontaneous Civic Staff) associations.
The two biggest campaigns providing meals free-of-charge to health service workers fighting the coronavirus epidemic – our #MealForDoctor and #SustenanceCalling initiatives – are joining forces!
As part of the #PosiłekDlaLekarza (Eng. #MealForADoctor) campaign, we are raising funds to deliver meals to healthcare workers. However, we are only one of the many support initiatives that emerged spontaneously a month ago in Poland, after the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe and in response to the associated restrictions.
The #MealForADoctor campaign has succeeded beyond our expectations. A spontaneous idea two weeks ago has gained unexpected popularity and resulted in over 500 catering establishments from all over Poland volunteering to participate. We also almost immediately reached several hundred thousand zlotys in donations and have so far raised almost 600,000 zlotys. As a result, meals have been delivered to over a hundred hospitals across the country. These are huge numbers! Your solidarity is fantastic, but it also raises some organisational challenges.
We encourage you to read the detailed infographic summarising our activities from the very beginning of the action until 1 April.
A few days ago, we wrote that the #MealForDoctor campaign had surpassed the organisers’ wildest expectations. The success of the fundraiser was also reflected in the Polish media, including online healthcare portals.
The #MealForDoctor campaign is proving the great power that lies in spontaneous initiatives and the generosity of the Polish people. Even in our most optimistic scenarios, we did not expect that, in less than a week, we would collect more than PLN 500,000 and provide support to almost 500 restaurants – and, as a consequence, the same help to medical doctors themselves. Your participation in the campaign and the trust you have placed in our team – which gave you no guarantees that the initiative would succeed – are extremely encouraging.
There has been great success for the action organised by the Open Dialogue Foundation and Niskie Składki (Low Contributions) and Spontaniczny Sztab Obywatelski (Spontaneous Civic Staff) associations with the support of Patryk Wachowiec from the FOR (Civil Development Forum) Foundation. In the face of the epidemic in Poland, we have raised PLN 500,763 for meals for the health care workers who are tirelessly fighting the spread of coronavirus and helping those infected.
Although most of the COVID-19 cases in Poland have been recorded in Warsaw, restaurateurs from all over the country have decided to join the #MealForDoctor campaign and support local hospital workers with meals.
The Open Dialogue Foundation, the Low Contributions Association, Spontaneous Civic Campaign Headquarters and Civil Development Forum have launched an online fundraiser for meals for Polish healthcare workers, who are now spending even more time at work due to the coronavirus epidemic, leading Polish media reported.
“Poland is fighting the coronavirus pandemic. The number of people who have been confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 is growing rapidly. There are also fatalities. An epidemic emergency has broken out across the country, and medical personnel are working tirelessly. It turns out that Poles want to support the people fighting for our lives and taking care of us.” Onet.pl announced the launch of the fundraising campaign #MealForADoctor (Pol. #PosiłekDlaLekarza), whose originators want to help doctors, nurses and ambulance crews by offering them free meals from local catering outlets.
“‘Meal for a Doctor’ is one of the campaigns aiming to support healthcare workers in hospitals and health centres,” Radio Zet reports.“Restaurants and catering establishments from all over the country have already declared that they will provide meals to medical staff for free. Each of us can support them in implementing this idea. We look at what the ‘Meal for a Doctor’ campaign is about, who is taking part in it and how you can join in.”
“‘Due to the coronavirus epidemic, health professionals have a lot of work to do. Let’s help them by paying for meals that they can order for free,’ the organisers of the action ‘Meal for the Doctor’ said in an appeal,”we read on Interia.pl.
Less than a day after the launch of the spontaneous action aimed at supporting Polish healthcare workers during the coronavirus epidemic. Rzeczpospolita has already covered this topic. The daily magazine reported that 45,000 zlotys have already been collected for meals for doctors.
“Doctors, nurses, ambulance crews. During the epidemic, all healthcare workers can count on a free meal from restaurants taking part in the actions #MealForADoctor (Pol. #PosiłekDlaLekarza) and #GastronomyIsHelping (Pol. #GastroPomaga),” reports TVN24, pointing out that although the two initiatives are organised by different people, their goal is the same – to help those “at the forefront of the fight against the disease”.
The coronavirus epidemic is affecting all areas of our lives. However, it is most affecting health care, which is at the forefront of the fight against the disease. Doctors and medical staff are currently working at their best, often at the expense of their families and friends. It is primarily on their commitment that our ability to quickly suppress the epidemic will depend. Those hospitalised, and their loved ones, are also in a difficult situation, and are putting their hopes in the health service.