Handbook for The Great Hug Organization ENG (in points)

DOWNLOADofficial Handbook for The Great Hug on the WOSP Organization.pdf

Creating a Great Hug yourself is straightforward and can bring a lot of joy. We’ve been doing it in Torun, Poland since 1999, so you can trust us. In 2020 The Great Hug will become an official event on WOŚP worldwide, but that’s not all. 

The biggest Hugs will receive special awards - additional equipment for your hospital or a wonderful cup (see the ‘’Rewards” section). The biggest, meaning the ones in which the most people will be squeezing. . In order for your Great Hug to take part in the competition, you must fulfill the conditions from this Handbook. 

In case of any further inquiries, contact the Coordinators of The Great Hugs:

  • Coordination of The Great Hugs abroad: Jarek Jaworski (Polish and English language); phone 533 724 213; e-mail adress: jarek.wielkasciskawa@gmail.com
  • Coordination of The Great Hugs in Poland: Jarry (Polish language); phone 533 724 212; e-mail adress: jarry.wielkasciskawa@gmail.com

We count on you that not only the Polish will hug, but also everyone who feels like it. We encourage you to spread the idea of The Great Hug around the world.


The goal of The Great Hug is to squeeze as many people as possible in a - circa - 20 square meters heart.


  • Category for foreign Great Hugs :In other countries the huggers will be competing to win a special Big Hearts’ Cup. 
  • Category for The Great Hugs in Poland: In Poland the winners of the competition will receive a 50 thousand PLN worth medical equipment for their hospital.

Applicating and sending the results

1. Apllicating

  • In order to applicate you have to send to the right Coordinator an application form.
  • The form should be sent before 12.00 a.m., 11th January 2020

2. Sending the results

  • For your Great Hug to be considered in the competition, during the day of the Grand Finale - 12th January 2020, until 5.00 p.m. (for foreign Comitees - until 8 p.m.) you must send information about the final result (the amount of people who hugged in the competition)
  • Send the results to: jarry.wielkasciskawa@gmail.com (Polish Comitees) and jarek.wielkasciskawa@gmail.com (Foreign Comitees).
  • The text that should be included in the mail can be found over in the Regulamin section.
  • Video-verification of the winners: after the Coordinators will have gathered all the results, to the Comitees in the first 3 places they will send a mail with a request of sending a verification video. For foreign Comitees the request will be sent only to the one with the best score.
  • The video should show the state of the Great Hug during the "Decisive Thirty". You should show going around the whole Heart during the "Decisive Thirty". Mail with the request will be sent before 6.00 p.m (9 p.m. for foreign Hugs).
  • The Comitees are required to send the video until 7.00 p.m. (10 p.m. for foreign Comitees) according to the manual in the mail from the Coordinators.
  • The video will be used as the final verification to determine if a Great Hug was done according to the Regulations.


Technical issues

1. Who can hug?

  • Everybody!
  • Animals or any buggies musn't be in the Heart

2. „Storey” hugging

Can be used within the bounds of common sense and safety. „Storey” means an adult holding a child up to 10 years old on their shoulders

3. The Heart

  • The Heart should be painted with a white paint
  • The exact dimensions and a guide on painting it will be found HERE. the project was made for us by mathematician, prof. dr hab. Stanisław Kasjan from Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
  • The kind of paint is of your choosing
  • For your Hug to be qualified and win the Cup, you must stick to the set dimensions of the Heart

Time of The Great Hug

  • The Hug lasts for 30 minutes. This is the time between the start and end of The Hug, during which people can come into the Heart.
  • The beginning is announced by the Master of Ceremony (see point 3)
  • The Hugs in Poland and Poland’s time zone begin at 3.00 p.m.
  • Hugs organized in other time zones can begin at any convienient hour

The Great Hug Team

In order to successfully do a Great Hug you will need a team to help you. They will make sure that the Hug is done in the same fashion as all over the world. It can consist of WOŚP volunteers or other people chosen by you.

1. The Master Of Ceremony (MC) 

  • One or two key persons. The number of people who will get encouraged to enter the Heart depends on their performance.
  • The MC announces the final result of The Hug after the ‘’Decisive Thirty”
  • He/she helps the GG responsible for counting the outgoers by informing about the resigners he/she might have missed 

2. Guardians of The Gates 

  • 3 people
  • 2 Guardians will stand at the entrance to the Heart and count the incomers
  • The third Guardian counts the leavers and should watch over the whole Heart
  • We advise you to bring a notebook to not lose yourself in the numbers (the one in your phone can be faulty as it can discharge)
  • As the GGs are vital, please ensure to send their names to us.
  • It’s also worth to have substitutes, in case anything unfortunate happens

3. Contacting the media and social-media

  • We reccomend informing local media about the place and time of your Hug. Media’s help with publicizing the Great Hu gis crucial and helps attaining the highest scores.
  • We encourage you to take photos and film the event as well as posting them on your social-media. Of course, our Facebook is open for You: www.facebook.com/sciskawa
  • We would love for you to send us your most interesting materials, which we can later post.

Counting the huggers

The counting goes on for the whole time of forming the Hug, so for 30 minutes. During that time,  the Guardians of the Gates consequently count the numbers of huggers coming into the Heart and the resigners.

Summary of the final number of huggers – the ‘’Decisive Thirty”!

  • After the limit of 30 minutes passes, the MC closes the heart
  • Nobody can come in, nor get out for the next 30 seconds
  • For 30 seconds the Hug has to stay unitary for it to be qualified in the competition
  • in this time a Comitee has to record the video of the Heart's state by going around it (the video will be then sent to the Coordinators for verification purposes, see Applicating and sending the results)
  • At the same time, the GGs come together with the MC. The ‘’running” GG says how many resigners were counted. That number is then substracted from the number of participants, who have come into the Heart and this is how we get the final result.
  • After the 30 seconds the MC announces the end of The Great Hug and the result
  • The result should be reported to a local Competition Board, drafted by a local GOCC Comitee
  • The Board sends the results to the Coordinators

We repeat: during this 30 seconds no person from the Heart can cross the white line and nobody can join the huggers, otherwise The Hug will be disqualified.

It's all. Let's go! :)