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New Secretary initiates rejuvenation of Echinger development aid team

2023-12-10T15:48:46.807Z

Highlights: New Secretary initiates rejuvenation of Echinger development aid team. New members must continue to be recruited to support the active AKE members in the continuation of their actions. Permaculture project at the secondary school in Isalo is bearing its first fruits – in the truest sense of the word. The second permaculture project in Animosimena has not yet been launched because the land registry entry for the designated agricultural area is still missing. Therefore, the meeting decided to postpone the project until further notice.



Status: 10.12.2023, 16:38 PM

By: Ulrike Wilms

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The Board of Directors of the AKE with (from left) Chairman Norbert Lichtenfeld, Secretary Christine Graf-Behles, Vice President Josef Gerber and Treasurer Michael Steigerwald. © Wang

With a tried-and-tested trio and a new secretary, the Echinger AK Development Aid is tackling the next challenges. For "boss" Norbert Lichtenauer, it is probably his last term in office.

Eching – "One very last time" – with these words Norbert Lichtenfeld, old and new chairman of the AK Development Aid, declared his willingness to add another two-year term of office. At the annual general meeting of the association, he received a 18 percent vote of confidence from the <> members, as did his deputy Josef Gerber and treasurer Michael Steigerwald, who, after intensive persuasion, also stood for re-election.

Desired rejuvenation

Fortunately, Christine Graf-Behles was a new and younger member for the secretary's office. Born in Echingen in 1989, she replaces Werner Schefold, who did not stand for re-election. At the same time, this is a first step towards the rejuvenation that everyone wants. As an important task for the future, Josef Gerber warned, new members must continue to be recruited to support the active AKE members in the continuation of their actions - in addition to drinking water and school projects for about five years also agricultural projects - with words and deeds.

(By the way: Everything from the region is now also available in our regular Freising newsletter.)

The permaculture project at the secondary school in Isalo is bearing its first fruits – in the truest sense of the word. © Wang

As Lichtenfeld explained, the difficult political situation in Madagascar as well as the Corona pandemic have made cooperation with Malagasy cooperation partners more difficult – regardless of the already difficult conditions on the ground. A major focus over the past few years has been the maintenance and functioning of the 70 wells in the villages of Ambalakida, Mariarano, Isalo and Beahitse, which supply more than 20,000 Malagasy people with clean drinking water. For example, a solar pump had to be repaired several times and spare parts had to be bought.

In the truest sense of the word, the AK Development Aid has broken new ground with the planned introduction of agricultural permaculture projects at the Isalo and Anosimena sites. The corresponding, very complex funding application from the German Federal Ministry for Technical Cooperation (BMZ) for a period of four years was approved, as were all previous LFS projects. Thus, in addition to the estimated own funds of 12,000 euros, which are made up of contributions from the 150 members and donations, the working group can count on a subsidy of three times (over 36,000 euros) from the ministry.

Next steps

AKE Advisory Board member Jürgen Bader, who has taken the lead in permaculture since his trip to Madagascar in 2019 with initial on-site soundings, reported to the assembly on the status quo and presented progress reports from Isalo. Despite little local expertise and various setbacks such as hurricanes or animals that caused damage to the plantings and fences, horseradish, tomatoes, zucchini and cucumbers, among others, were harvested on the planted beds this year, albeit on a manageable scale. On the other hand, the second permaculture project in Animosimena has not yet been launched because the land registry entry for the designated agricultural area is still missing. Therefore, the meeting decided to postpone the project until further notice. Instead, the funds planned there and currently not needed for this are to be invested in the ongoing permaculture trial in Isalo and thus a multi-purpose building (canteen for the secondary school, warehouse for agricultural products and overnight station for the project leaders) is to be financed – provided that the ministry agrees to this reallocation of subsidies.

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2023-12-10

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