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Table and donation bus: The blue car against hunger

2022-05-16T04:44:30.229Z

Table and donation bus: The blue car against hunger Created: 05/16/2022, 06:30 By: Stefan Weinzierl Eagerly awaited: When “The Ladybug” arrives at the Isartor, half a dozen people in need are already waiting for the doors to open. © Weinzierl Ladybug project: Höhenkirchner couple in Munich provide food and clothing to the needy. Höhenkirchen-Siegertsbrunn/Munich – At first glance, the blue ve



Table and donation bus: The blue car against hunger

Created: 05/16/2022, 06:30

By: Stefan Weinzierl

Eagerly awaited: When “The Ladybug” arrives at the Isartor, half a dozen people in need are already waiting for the doors to open.

© Weinzierl

Ladybug project: Höhenkirchner couple in Munich provide food and clothing to the needy.

Höhenkirchen-Siegertsbrunn/Munich – At first glance, the blue vehicle that stopped on Thursday evening in Munich's Sonnenstraße shortly after the Sendlinger Tor on the sidewalk looks like a normal bus.

But it has no number and shows no destination on the LED display.

Instead, the name "The Ladybug" lights up on the front display, and illuminated letters on the side announce the message "It's never too late to do good".

Nobody gets into the vehicle who wants to get home from work quickly.

The people for whom the bus door opens here hope for a warm meal, clean trousers or a pack of razor blades.

Welcome to the table and donation bus by Nathalie Hartmann and Markus Grimm.

The couple from Höhenkirchen-Siegertsbrunn traveled to Munich for the first time over a year ago to distribute food to the needy.

"With the private car and the homemade potato soup," Hartmann recalls.

In the city center, the two bring their food to the man and woman without any problems - but quickly realize that the homeless people don't just need steaming soup to live on the streets.

They ask for clothes, hygiene items, sleeping bags and backpacks. Hartmann secretly notes down all the needs of those in need - and then buys things for the next tour.

Soon things will no longer fit in the car, and a trailer is needed.

The initial spark for the bus is meeting the homeless master painter Andreas

The initial spark for the bus is meeting the homeless master painter Andreas.

"We gave him soup and a spoon, and he couldn't eat it because he was so cold," says Grimm: "So we said to each other: We have to do more." The couple looks at other projects and decides to buy and rebuild a bus.

The two have been on the road with the ladybird bus and two or three helpers per tour since the end of February, going to downtown stations every Thursday – from Sonnenstraße to Königsplatz down into the valley and to the Isartor.

There is a schedule, but Hartmann and Grimm don't stubbornly stick to it.

"It's important to us to help as the situation requires," says Hartmann as the bus leaves the first station.

Almost at the same time, Grimm, who is driving the bus himself, hits the brakes.

He spotted two penniless people on the side of the road.

They usually wait for the bus at the first station - and now hurry up, happily waving, when the "ladybug" makes a spontaneous stop for them and the helpers provide them with stew, fresh bread, bananas and apple strudel.

Nobody cares that a thermos flask breaks due to the abrupt stop.

"That happens from time to time," says Hartmann and laughs.

This carelessness, which you quickly notice on the tour, distinguishes Hartmann and Grimm.

The two, 40 and 42 years old, who currently earn their living with the sale and rental of horse trailers, among other things, simply tackle, approach people openly and impartially, simply enjoy helping.

The couple jumped in a few weeks ago when the Höhenkirchen-Siegertsbrunn community was looking for someone to bring the collected aid from Ukraine to the Polish-Ukrainian border.

"It was a real adventure," says Grimm as he steers the bus through downtown Munich.

Grimm is not afraid of contact

Just a few minutes later, on Karlstrasse, the trained carpenter jumps out of his vehicle.

He saw Andreas lying at the entrance to St. Bonifaz Church with his sleeping bag and other things.

The next moment he hugs Andreas, hugs him and hands him shower gel and shoes that he brought especially for him.

Grimm is not afraid of contact.

The next moment he anxiously rushes to the aid of a priest whose robe has just been spilled with stew by a drunk homeless man in anger.

The fact that the clergyman had just asked the ladybug team not to stop in front of St. Bonifaz because there are now increasing problems with the poor at St. Bonifaz helping the homeless who are making a riot in front of the church – no problem for Grimm.

He also shows understanding for the needs of the clergy.

Just like for the taxi drivers who are waiting for customers in the valley behind the old town hall.

When the "ladybird" stops there, it surprises the taxi drivers with free coffee.

The last stop is tough: Half a dozen people are waiting for the ladybug at the Isartor, within ten minutes more than 20 people are crowding around the bus.

While the helpers provide those waiting with food and drinks, Grimm and Hartmann take the time to chat with the homeless or to look for the right item from the “mobile clothing store” with them.

After this last station, things are often not the same for the helpers, says Grimm.

“The close contact with these people touches many.

Then a few tears flow on the way back.” Why do the two of them do this and sacrifice so many other hours a week in addition to the regular bus trips to shop for the needy, collect and sort the donations?

“Because it makes sense,” says Grimm simply.

"It's a nice feeling to help," adds Hartmann.

When asked whether the two would treat themselves to something, Hartmann doesn't really have an answer.

“Our social project takes up all of our time.

But we enjoy the time together and with our dog,” she says.

In return, the two have wishes for the future.

Hartmann would like to found an association for her social project – and with the help of the members, make more trips to Munich.

Grimm dreams of one day hiring a star chef for the "ladybird": "Then we could offer people really great food."

The ladybug

If you want to donate money and things or want to come along as a helper, you can find out more and get in touch on the website der-marienkaefer.de.

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2022-05-16

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