Germany: The Importance of Sustainability in Developmental Politics

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By UPF Germany, Rosemarie Leja

 

On October 16, 2016, UPF Giessen once again hosted an International Cafe event. On this occasion, an association with goals connected to the UNO Africa week was invited to introduce itself.

To start off with the principles and goals of UPF were explained. The focus is on international and interreligious communication and cooperation.

Following this, the alliance Afrique-Europe, established in 2011, introduced itself. The members are of African origin, and Europeans, and the basic idea is for Africa and Europe to find ways to complement each other and to work together. Especially stressed was the principle of sustainability; investment must be directed towards starting new local projects. In this way, a long term perspective can be established. Opportunities have to be provided above all for people in rural areas, especially women, children, and young people. The main focus is on health and education. Some of the projects (in eight different countries) are: constructing classrooms and wells, building fruit and vegetable gardens, and sanitary and medical facilities.

A short presentation dealt with the role of women in the past and today. In tribal life, the woman has an important role to play and she is seen as the source of life. Outside influences such as colonialization have pushed this role into the background, and woman’s self-confidence and independence as an influential person in African society must be strengthened.

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The importance of circular migration (where young people from Africa who have been educated in Europe return in order to establish local projects), was emphasized. This is known as the “Triple-Win- Effect”, which has positive effects on three levels; for the countries of origin, the receiving countries and for the migrants themselves.

Finally, a short introduction was given to the association of bi-national families and partnerships which works on a national level to represent the interests of bi-national, and increasingly, multi- national families and partnerships.

In summary, one can say that the networking and binding of all the forces for good on a global level is gaining an ever increasing importance.

It was a very informative afternoon. Special thanks go to Mr. and Mrs. Takpara and Mr. Sturm for the interesting presentations and for their investment in the above mentioned associations.

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Further information about the Alliance Afrique- Europe e.V. can be found here

For further information about UPF click here