Cooperation between the Insitute for further education of the Evangelical Women’s Relief in the Rhineland e.V. and the AEF – Spanische Weiterbildungsakademie e.V. in the context of the integration project “My New Life in Germany – New Home Bonn / Rhein-Sieg” funded by the german government.
From 21st to the 24th of October 2019, an educational week for women took place under the direction of the Insitute for further education of the Evangelical Women’s Relief in the Rhineland e.V. and in cooperation with the AEF – Spanische Weiterbildungsakademie e.V. In addition to language support, creative activities and the empowerment of women, two field trips took place in the area of Bonn.
Exkursion day 1: 22.10.2019
On October 22nd, the women visited the exhibition “From Mosul to Palmyra – A Virtual Journey Through the World Heritage Site” in the Bonn Federal Art Gallery.
A reference to German history offered the attack on Bonn on October 18, 1944. The information, personal stories and the existing footage about the attack, which brought a great deal of destruction and a huge fire damage, left a lasting impression on the women. Even more impressive, however, they found the employed construction work and efforts of the people who raised the country from the rubble again. The fact that a peaceful life after the war has been possible in Bonn and all over Germany already for decades has fueled the hope that one day there will be peaceful everyday life in the home regions of the women in Syria and Iraq.
The exhibition was experienced by all participants as highly impressive. The feeling of home, loss and identity was also discussed in the afternoon at the stop in the café of the Federal Art Gallery and impacted on the other project days even after. The possibility of the virtual reconstruction of the destroyed cultural sites boosted hopes. Diverse women also want to show the exhibition to their husbands and children and come back once again. The subsequent workshop as part of the International Art and Peace Project “Simply Blue” (www.start-international.org) was perceived as very beneficial, creative and “meditative”, for which the women painted blue tiles with white patterns,as they are used in the Middle East.
Exkursion day 2: 23.10.2019
For the 23rd of october, the women wanted to go on a trip to the Siebengebirge in Bonn to visit the castle on the so called “dragon’s rock”. None of the women had been to the castle before, although some have been living in Bad Godesberg for some time and one of the participants can even look right at the ruin from her living room window. Identity-creative components, such as cultural sights, were discussed on the way up the rock.
In good weather conditions, the route from the course location to the Mehlemer ferry was explored by foot, crossing over to the other side by the Rhine by ferry and, as first highlight, the historic Drachenfelsbahn was used for the ascent.
Together the participants imagined what medieval life must have been like in a castle. Possibly, the women concluded, it must have been similar, to the life in the citadel of Aleppo, which was visited the day before virtually in the Federal Art gallery. It is much more important, according to the women, to point out similarities across different cultures, rather than stressing differences, because all people around the world share a similar way of life, the same wishes and worries.
The compact educational for women is offered every year during the summer and autumn holidays. If you are interested or have any questions, please contact:
Speaker educational services
Evangelische Frauenhilfe im Rheinland e.V.
Tel. 0228 – 9541 – 127
Dr. Artur Kalnins
AEF – Spanische Weiterbildungsakademie e.V.
Tel. 0228 – 29977981