Community
Published: January 11, 2021
Community
Published: January 11, 2021

Marek Uses Childhood Memories to Transform a Local School

Marek Laznicka isn’t one to turn down a challenge. When the local municipality of a nearby village, a place from his childhood, called out for help, he leaped at the chance of making a difference to the lives of school children. Despite the difficulties of leading a COLORFUL COMMUNITIES® project during a pandemic, as our regional environment, health and safety (EHS) manager, he was certainly the right person for the job.

An Unexpected Mission for Environment, Health and Safety

Marek was working at the Sigma Kalon’s Břasy site when PPG acquired the company in 2008. Due to the unexpected retirement of the site EHS leader, he started taking on health and safety responsibilities.

Health and safety was entirely new for me. But I embraced it, continued my education, and acquired National Health and Safety Certification.

Today, Marek is EHS regional manager of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. He enjoys getting to meet people from different businesses with a different approach and understanding of requirements.

My job gives me the opportunity to work with great people in core leadership functions. I have a wonderful, supportive team.

Marek appreciates feeling like he’s making a personal contribution to ensuring the culture of safety at PPG. And the recent Colorful Communities project was no exception.

I am very proud of how fast, effectively and collectively we are able to work as both a global and regional PPG team.

A Major Transformation in Two Phases

Marek and his family used to visit the area of Kařez, near Břasy, during the summer when he was a kid. When he learned that the Kařez municipality was trying to create a suitable space at the local community center for elementary school kids while their school underwent major renovation, he jumped at the chance to help.

Marek led a Colorful Communities project spread across three months, transforming the interior of the community center into a space for education.

The first phase of the project (600 m2) started in June when, due to COVID precautions, a professional painter used PRIMALEX® Essence and Primalex Ceramic to tend to the treatment of wet walls in the basement where the classrooms, bathrooms and a small cafeteria would be.

The second phase (700 m2) in September saw the project focus on painting the main events/sports hall, storage room, and the rest of the premises with Primalex Essence and Ceramic – a brand new high-quality, extra stain resistant, washable product line.

Beautifying “the Hub of Village Life”

Despite the challenges of working during a pandemic, Marek is proud of the project’s huge success. The municipality was able to transfer all the school’s activities to alternative premises, including the community center, to ensure the children a safe and pleasant environment to study during the 2020/2021 year while their school is renovated.

What was special about this project is that it did not just improve daily life for 30 elementary school kids and 30 kindergarten kids. Repainting the hall and using it as an indoor recreational space has meant that other people living in the village can use it too, and that’s not all!

Now the cafeteria not only provides lunch to the children each day, but also for 20 retired village citizens who collect their food to eat at home.

Marek felt it a pity that it wasn’t safe to hold an opening ceremony for the public and show off our amazing new Primalex Ceramic product. However, the project featured in the local newspaper, which included an official public thanks to PPG from the mayor of the village.

When Marek is not organizing the renovation of a local community center, or managing environment, health and safety across his region, he loves spending time with his wife and three sons. He also participates in various sports activities and cultural events, listens to music and enjoys cycling.

I want to make sure that everyone in PPG can enjoy the same feeling of working safely and then returning to their home and loved ones every day.