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Czesław Niemen is one of the most popular and most original influential artists in Polish pop music of the 20th century.

After beginning with modest pop songs, he quickly turned toward expansive compositions that incorporated elements of jazz and avant-garde music. A charismatic vocalist gifted with an exceptional voice, Niemen was also one of the first artists in Poland to use electronic instruments on a wider scale.


Born Czesław Juliusz Wydrzycki 16 February 1939 in Stare Wasiliszki near Nowogródek (which was then Polish territory) he sang as a child in the church choir and attended primary music school in nearby Grodno. After forced resettlement of the entire family in the 1950s, he attended secondary school in Gdańsk and played covers with an acoustic guitar at student cabarets and clubs.


In 1962, after receiving an award at the Young Talent Festival in Szczecin, he went on his first Polish tour with the band Czerwono-Czarni. In fall of that year, he began using his stage name Niemen, which he later officially changed. 

Debuted as a rock and soul singer in the early 1960’s. He recorded “Dziwny jest ten świat” (Strange Is This World) as a major Polish protest song in 1967, and was an early pioneer of psychedelic music in communist Poland in the late ’60s. He recorded and released several albums during his lifestyle. In his later years he went on to compose film soundtracks and theater music, and in the 1990s he showed interest in art, painting and computer graphics. 

Czesław Niemen spent the final years of his life battling cancer. He died on 17 January 2004. An urn with his ashes was buried at Warsaw’s Powązki cemetery on 30 January in a ceremony that brought together several thousand fans and numerous friends from the music industry.

The text was written in November 2019.

Short bio of the volunteer:

Danuta Brzozowska, a volunteer from Poland who likes to ride a bike and play tennis.

Erasmus+

Erasmus+ is a program of the European Commission embracing the fields of education, training, youth, and sports during the period 2014-2020. One of the major aspects is the cooperation between the different fields where the program acts, hence contributing for a diverse and rich Europe.

Amongst the several goals of the programme, the following are prioritised: the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, including the headline education target; the aims of the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020), including the corresponding benchmarks; the sustainable development of Partner Countries in the field of higher education; the overall goals of the renewed framework for European cooperation in the youth field (2010-2018); the objective of developing the European dimension in sport, in particular grassroots sport, in line with the EU work plan for sport and the promotion of European values in accordance with Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union.

In order to achieve these goals, the Erasmus+ has several action policies. The Key Action 1 (KA1) is directed towards the mobility of people; Key Action 2 (KA2) for the cooperation for innovation and the interchange of good experiences; and Key Action 3 (KA3) which is for the support of reformation policies.

European Voluntary Service

Since 1991 the University of Madeira Students’ Union has developed a wide incentive policy for voluntary work. In 2013 the Students’ Union started the process to receive, send and coordinate Erasmus+ projects of the European Voluntary Service, in order to have a larger influence in the volunteering field. The Union received its first volunteer withing the ambit of a KA1 project in 2014. Many efforts have been done to allow young people from Madeira to take part in several initiatives in Europe, as well as propose several projects allowing young people from several countries to work in the projects of the Students’ Union of the University of Madeira. The main goal of the voluntary work is the contribution of the volunteers to the communities and places they will be staying, being their work not rewarded with payment.

We believe that the European Voluntary Service is a mechanism full of experiences, allowing the approved candidates to have the privilege of taking part in these projects and benefit the places and communities where these volunteers will be staying.

Since 2013, the University of Madeira Students’ Union has received volunteers that have collaborated in several activities and initiatives. Besides being able to enjoy a wonderful experience which will contribute to their personal and professional growth, they are able to contribute in a unique way to the community in which they are inserted and to join dozens of volunteers from the University of Madeira.