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with Stefan Nestler

“School up”: Alphorns as cornucopias

Ralf during his presentation in Cologne

Tailwind. There was a lot of it for our “School up!” project yesterday. The Rhineland-Cologne section of the German Alpine Club (DAV) had invited to a charity event to support the reconstruction of the school in Thulosirubari which had been destroyed by the earthquake in Nepal in 2015. The hall in Cologne was sold out. About 400 mountain lovers had come to be taken away by Ralf Dujmovits to the highest mountains in the world. At the end of June 2015, I had launched, along with Ralf and the Austrian top climber Gerlinde Kaltenbrunner, “School up!” to rebuild the “Gerlinde and Ralf School” as soon as possible. All proceeds of the evening in Cologne flowed into the current construction work in the small village, about 70 kilometers east of Kathmandu.

Still all fingers and toes

Construction site in Thulosirubari

At the beginning of the event, I showed some pictures of what has happened in Thulosirubari since the devastating earthquake. Then Ralf started his presentation. The first and so far only German, who has climbed all 14 eight-thousandths, told with a lot of humor and impressive pictures and videos his personal story in the Himalayas and Karakoram. About special companions, setbacks, moments of happiness. “After all, I still have all my fingers and toes, in contrast to many other expedition climbers,” said the 55-year-old – who also revealed his next project (my interview with Ralf on Tuesday here in the blog).

Donations doubled

Before and after the presentation as well as during the break, DAV volunteers collected donations among the visitors. The boxes filled rapidly. Kalle Kubatschka, head of the Cologne mountain friends, had announced that the DAV section would double the money collected in the boxes. And then there was another big surprise for Ralf and myself. In the name of the “Mutzbacher Alphornblaeser”, a music group of mountain enthusiasts from Odenthal near Cologne, Stefan Wiemer handed over a symbolic check for 2500 Euros for “School up!”.

The alphorns as cornucopias, great! Just like the commitment of the many lovely people from the Cologne DAV section, who selflessly served this great cause.

Class fund for “School up!”

Ralf and I were enthusiastic about the many contacts with spectators, who strengthened us in our commitment for “School up!”. So a teacher told me that she still had a surplus in her class fund and would now like to donate it to the children in Thulosirubari. I can not say enough thanks. Also in the name of Ralf, Gerlinde and of course the people in the mountain village in Nepal.

For all, who could not be in Cologne, but want to support “School up!” the bank account of the donation campaign:

Recipient: Nepalhilfe Beilngries e.V.
Bank: Volksbank Bayern Mitte eG/Germany
IBAN: DE05 7216 0818 0004 6227 07
Intended purpose: Gerlinde and Ralf School

Update 29 March: After all the receipts have been counted, there is a total of 7,738 Euros for “School up!” – in a single evening. Excellent! Once again a huge thank you to all who made it possible.


25. March 2017 | 22:25