Culture in the Community

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The SOLIDARNA Foundation launched the Culture in the Community programme in 2016 to create new socially engaged art opportunities, both for established authors and for the affirmation of young aspiring authors raising human rights issues in interesting ways. Supports within the Culture in the Community programme are channelled into cultural creativity promoting the values of human rights and solidarity.

This programme focuses on cultural production and includes a wide range of authors’ styles, techniques and media, without discrimination based on the traditional classification into so-called popular and high culture, which uses original and inspiring methods to open dialogue in the community about the fundamental values of our society, and encourage citizens to think and act critically. The costs of programme design and implementation are covered through substantial volunteer effort of the authors, partnerships with relevant organisations and institutions to secure non-financial support, and the support of interested donors.

In September 2016, we signed a donation agreement for the Culture in the Community programme with Atlantic grupa, which donated HRK 50,000.00 to help develop the first series of cultural productions in cooperation with the SOLIDARNA Foundation.

The events supported within the Culture in the Community programme in 2019 are listed below.

Zagreb MentalFest, organised by the association Ludruga – 100% ljudi

We donated HRK 5,000 to the association Ludruga to support the organisation of the 2nd Zagreb MentalFest, a festival of culture and mental health, held 24-25 May 2019. The festival aims to openly discuss mental health topics in the public space, thus directly encouraging the destigmatization of persons facing psychological and social challenges due to mental health difficulties.

Fund-raising play and campaign Od pacijenta do programera

In cooperation with the association Ludruga, we successfully ran the fund-raising campaign Od pacijenta do programera (Patient to Programmer) from 20 September to 20 November 2019, raising a total of HRK 17,080.26 to cover two-year tuition costs, amounting to HRK 14,600, for computer science studies for 38-year-old Hrvoje, who has been living with a chronic mental illness from his early youth, is chronically unemployed, and is undergoing a treatment programme at the hospital. In cooperation with Ludruga and the Ribnjak Youth Centre, we organised a fund-raising culture evening at the Centre on 12 October, including the performance of Ludruga’s play S druge strane ogledala (At the Other Side of the Mirror), directed by Hrvoje Handl, based on life experiences and the creativity of Ludruga’s members, who act in the play.

Homo fešta Festival, Poreč

We donated HRK 8,000 for the organisation of the Homo fešta 2019 Festival in Poreč. The project contributes to the development of the local community by creating new culture and entertainment events to add to Istria’s cultural offer, and also raises awareness of the problems LGBT persons face daily. One of its objectives is to encourage the community to accept specific issues faces by LGBT persons, such as invisibility, the sense of not belonging, fear, and exclusion, and actively help address them. An effort is needed to destigmatize LGBT persons and break down prejudice and stereotypes, and culture and entertainment are the most efficient ways to do this, and most widely accepted in the community.

Cooperation with the Academy of Drama Arts and support for student productions

Under the cooperation agreement between the SOLIDARNA Foundation and the Academy of Drama Arts, we again supported the organisation of two festivals, PitchADU and FRKA.

The fourth PitchADU (Pitching forum ADU) was held on 18 June 2019. This project is designed to give final year students of undergraduate film studies at the Academy of Drama Arts with the University in Zagreb a chance to pitch their final projects, along with access to the professional world. Projects are pitched to representatives of televisions, production companies, film directors, game developers, and other audio-visual sector experts who are looking to hire students, buy their projects, or collaborate on them. The SOLIDARNA Foundation supported the implementation of the best pitched project with HRK 5,000.

The 13th edition of FRKA, a show featuring students’ films produced by the Academy of Drama Arts, was held at the Academy of Drama Arts, University of Zagreb, 5-7 April 2019. The show was organised by second-year production students in collaboration with design students from the Faculty of Architecture, who are responsible for the Festival’s visual identity. More than 50 films were to be screened at the Festival. Awards for the best feature and documentary film director, best camera, best production, best script, best actor and actress, and best editor are presented at the event. The Grand Prix Audience Award is also presented to the best feature and documentary film, along with the Nikola Ivanda Award for the best TV format.

KNAP Pešćenica Culture Centre

Our donation helped the KNAP Pešćenica Culture Centre perform its play Anka at the 14th International Amateur Theatre Festival in Laktaši. The play received the Best Director Award, and Ema Drokan the Best Actress Award for the second time in a row.

Ellie on the Road

In 2019, SOLIDARNA continued the youth-focused creative project Ellie on the Road, started in the second half of 2018 to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The project is dedicated to Eleanor Roosevelt, who played the key role in the adoption of the Declaration in December 1948 as the Chair of the first United Nations Human Rights Commission. Ellie on the Road included a themed photo contest for young people and a travelling photo exhibition, including a supporting cultural programme, which visited a number of interested cities and municipalities. More than 100 children and young people contributed over 300 original photos covering one or more basic concepts from the Universal Declaration, chosen by young people who designed the contest. The concepts include home, security, privacy, education, work, solidarity, accountability, culture and creativity, life, equality, dignity and freedom. The exhibition premiered at the Kino Europa cinema in Zagreb during the Human Rights Film Festival on 3 December 2018, and then went on a tour of Croatia.

Human Rights Film Festival 2019

The SOLIDARNA Foundation traditionally participated in the organisation of the programme of the 17th Human Rights Film Festival, held in Zagreb 1-8 December 2019. This year the Foundation again provided financial support to the young critics workshop by Kurziva – the Culture, Media and Social Issues Platform, which resulted in a series of mentored film reviews about the programme of the Human Rights Film Festival, published at In cooperation with the associations Ludruga and Životna linija (Lifeline), on 2 December, we organised the interactive workshop to make the City of Zagreb Mental Health Map, and map economic, social and political mental health risks. In cooperation with the Reproductive Justice Platform, we organised the public discussion Svijet po mjeri djevojčica (A World To Suit Girls) on 4 December. The public discussion was inspired by the Pravda za djevojčice (Justice for Girls) campaign, dedicated to changes and challenges in fighting the sexual violence against women and girls that we have recently witnessed.