The Hungarian American Coalition is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization founded in 1991. Its mission is to identify and promote the interests of the Hungarian-American community. Its goals are:
- To foster appreciation of Hungary’s history and culture;
- To protect and preserve the human and minority rights and cultural heritage of Hungarians throughout the world;
- To encourage educational and cultural interaction between the people of the U.S. and Hungary;
- And to support democratic institutions and economic development in Hungary.
Education and Culture
- Awarded scholarships to three students from Hungary through the Coalition’s „Dr. Elemér Kiss Scholarship Program:” János Americo Barbero at the University of Washington, Seattle; Zoltán Hardi at Winona State University, Minnesota, and Nóra Németh at the Dutchess Community College in Poughkeepsie, New York.
- Received grant from the Charles Simonyi Fund for the Arts and Sciences to support hippo therapy for disabled children provided by the Eilika Habsburg Foundation. The grant will be used for building an indoor riding course in Sóskút, Hungary, that provides rehabilitation services to more than 100 disabled children and adults under the management of Eilika Habsburg-Lotheringen, a professional therapist.
- Organized the eight-city concert tour of the Béla Bartók Choir and University Orchestra of Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. The tour is scheduled between October 21 and November 3, and will include performances in the Canadian cities of Toronto and Vancouver, and in Seattle, San Francisco, New York and New Brunswick in the United States.
- Formed the Coalition Committee to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of 1956:
- Accepted as a Coalition project the support of „Torn From the Flag,” an English-language, educational documentary film produced by Ms. Klaudia Kovacs, about the events and international ramifications of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. The Coalition is providing fundraising and logistical support for the film, both in the United States and in Hungary.
- Established the www.FreedomFighter56.com website dedicated to collecting oral histories and personal testimonies from the witnesses and participants in the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. The Coalition plans to publish a selection of these testimonials next year.
- Lauer Learning, an educational, multimedia company focusing on Hungarian and American educational issues, is partnering with the Coalition to create a historically-accurate, role-playing computer game about 1956 for the 50th anniversary.
- Established the Congressional Internship Program to allow young Hungarian Americans and English-speaking, well-qualified Hungarians from Hungary and the neighboring countries to get acquainted with the workings of the U.S. Congress, to motivate them for public service.
- Supported projects that benefit cultural and educational institutions of Hungarian minorities in the neighboring countries:
- Gave significant operational support to Madách Posonium Publisher of Pozsony (Bratislava), for publication of its weekly newspaper, Szabad Újság, four magazines, as well as for the maintenance of ten Hungarian bookstores in Slovakia.
- Provided funding for the fifth annual presentation of the „Posonium Literary Awards” for outstanding achievements in Hungarian literature to seven Hungarian writers in Slovakia. In the past five years 34 Hungarian writers, and 4 Hungarian visual artists have been honored with the Posonium Awards, that carry the monetary value of $300-$1,000.
- Operated an Office of Information in Washington, D.C. since 1991.
- Organized the two-week-long tour in April of Dr. Otto von Habsburg and his family to Washington, D.C., Cleveland, and New York City. During his meetings with U.S. government officials, members of academia, and various non-profits and think-tanks, Dr. Habsburg spoke of the significance for the United States of the expanding European Union. Dr. Habsburg also met with leaders of the Hungarian American community, and was guest of honor at a Gala Dinner at the Cosmos Club in Washington, DC, as well as the honoree of the Cleveland Council of World Affairs, and received a historic welcome by 300 people at the event organized by the Cleveland Hungarian Heritage Society. In New York the Hungarian Human Rights Foundation hosted the Habsburgs’ visit, organizing several events, where Dr. Habsburg repeatedly spoke about the importance for the Hungarian minority communities in the region of continued enlargement of the European Union.
- Provided up-to-date information on issues of interest to Coalition members to officials of the National Security Council, the State Department, and some members of Congress.
- Coalition leaders visited scenes of anti-Hungarian incidents and consulted with Hungarian community leaders about the background of the conflicts in the region. Communicated the deep concern of our community to State Department officials, including U.S. Missions in the appropriate countries.
- Maintained contact with US Embassy officials in Hungary; establishing a close working relationship with U.S. Ambassador George Herbert Walker, DCM Philip Reeker, and others.
- Maintained contact with leaders of Hungarian minorities in Romania, Slovakia and Vojvodina, in order to gain insight and obtain timely information on events affecting the Hungarian minority communities of the region.
- Continued to urge various officials of the Hungarian government to provide the necessary resources for the long-sought sociological survey of the Hungarian American Community, especially its existing organizations.
- Regularly disseminated “Noticed in the Press,” a selection of newspaper articles from American and Hungarian newspapers on topics of interest to Coalition members.
- Will organize the traditional Coalition activities on December 2-3, 2005, in Washington, D.C., including a State Department Briefing, the annual Mikulás Dinner with U.S. Ambassador George Herbert Walker III as Guest Speaker, and the Board and Annual Meetings.
- Continue to update the Coalition’s home page (www.hacusa.org), and the site established for the collection of Oral Histories of 1956 (www.freedomfighter56.com).