While the IAA premiered in the Bavarian capital Munich, around 200 invited guests gathered at the BMW World, to discuss one of the most pressing topics of our time: sustainability.
13 years ago, Christian Liebig was killed in a missile strike in Baghdad. An editor for Focus, he was one of over 600 journalists reporting from the war in the company of the US army. He was the only German journalist to give his life while working in Iraq. Since then, Beatrice von Keyserlingk has honoured her partner’s memory by dedicating herself to education projects in Africa through the Christian Liebig Foundation.
“When you keep returning to the same country over so many years, you naturally accumulate a great many impressions and experiences. Without doubt, one of my fondest memories is the time I spent living with a teacher’s family at our secondary school, far away from the capital. Every evening we sat outside the house and cooked. That was usually my job. My host family found it much more interesting to watch and taste what I created from their ingredients. I also took the opportunity to spend more time with my godchild, Florence, and to get to know her and her family better. It helped me to recognise and understand their everyday needs and concerns. Knowing what people in the region actually need helps with my work for the foundation.
For me, our greatest achievement is the girls’ home we built on the grounds of the secondary school. It has space for 72 girls, although it actually houses more – cramped conditions are not a problem. This facility is hugely beneficial for the young women – it offers them privacy, sanitary facilities, enough to eat and it’s close to the school. They don’t have to travel a long and often dangerous route to school, are protected and can concentrate on studying, which will improve their prospects.
Since our work began, Malawi has been one of the world’s ten poorest countries. According to the World Bank, it has actually moved to the top of the list since the catastrophic flood of early 2015. Calling this a sad situation is an understatement, but it makes me even more determined to carry on the good work funded by our many donors.”
Beatrice von Keyserlingk, co-founder and chair of the Christian Liebig Foundation
Our achievements after 13 years: