Seamus Heaney

Main Sponsor










A Foundation for the Future

The Ireland-Poland Cultural Foundation is being established at a particularly timely and forward-looking moment in the history of both countries, following as it does on Poland's historic accession to – and Ireland’s Presidency of – the European Union. As economic links continue to be forged between the two countries, the Ireland-Poland Cultural Foundation will work towards the establishment and enhancement of meaningful co-operation in the cultural and educational spheres.

Ireland ’s Polish community is by far the largest immigrant group in the country. (Indeed, Polish is now spoken by more people in Ireland than the Irish language.) Officially numbering 130,000 in the Republic (though more likely closer to 200,000), exposure to and engagement with this community represents a new and exciting opportunity for cultural (and, indeed, business) development in the new Ireland.

Our inaugural events programme over the coming months is part of an ambitious annual Cultural Promotions Programme designed to provide a platform for the celebration and promotion of artistic achievement, through events, publications, exhibitions, seminars, conferences, and other channels. Our aim is to complement this strand with a Cultural Exchange Programme comprising fellowships and scholarships for students, scholars, artists, scientists and professionals in partnership with a range of cultural and educational institutions in Ireland and Poland.

Our inaugural programme could not have been realised without the generous support and co-operation of The Ireland Funds, Farmleigh House, The Royal College of Surgeons, The Irish-Polish Society, POSK and the Embassy of Poland in Dublin. The Ireland-Poland Cultural Foundation is perfectly poised to meet the needs and aspirations of those who would see Ireland and Poland partners in a new enriched Europe.

Cathal McCabe