By citizens for citizens

By citizens for citizens

Even in times of low household budgets in local authorities, projects can still be realised, which aren’t budgeted for by the local authorities or town. This is the case in the town of Geisenfeld, near Ingolstadt, in upper Bavaria. In Geisenfeld, with the construction of the “Bewegungspark an der Ilm”, a generation-spanning exercise course has been created for all age groups. This took place in accordance with the model of the 4Fcircle-Fitnessparcours which is already represented throughout Germany (also see: www. 4Fcircle.de).

Where did the idea come from?

The idea for Geisenfeld was thought up by a small group of fitness-fanatic senior citizens. They “no longer wanted to just be spectators watching their grandchildren play on traditional playgrounds …” They came up with the idea of interactively taking part, irrespective of age, whether fit or not, alone or as part of a group. Facilities and equipment should keep everyone, of all sporting aptitudes, active. Sought-after, found. In the course of their research, the group for Herbert Eifertinger and G√ľnter Reith (City Council in Geisenfeld) came across the 4Fcircle concept and tested existing facilities in Munich. The result of this “practice test” was the foundation concept for the exercise park in Geisenfeld. The desired stations were mainly selected from the 4Fcircle range and arranged into a sport-scientific balanced course.

Now a financing concept has been compiled and presented to the Geisenfeld district council. The total cost of about 75,000 EUR (equipment costs and construction) was divided into three columns:

Stadt = Town Burger = Citizen Wirtschaft = Economy

The town of Geisenfeld agreed on an area of land and to assume a portion of costs up to a maximum of 30,000 EUR and, thus, honoured the civil commitment.

The organisers acquired about a third of the costs in the form of sponsorship money from local companies. The acquisition of sponsorship was facilitated via the extensive information material on the individual stations of the exercise course. The organisation team on site in Geisenfeld used all existing contacts in the local companies. A sponsor was found for each individual station successively.

Local companies provided allowances in kind (construction, filling material, planning activities, etc.) as sponsorship measures, which also covered a third of the costs.

In the spring of 2010, after about one year of lead time, a project was realised which under “normal circumstances” would have been put back years, or possibly not have been implemented at all. The civic actions of a small group resulted in a situation which was advantageous for the local authority, all citizens and guests in Geisenfeld.

The local authority only had to bear a third of the costs and is fulfilling its task of offering citizens the chance to stay fit and healthy with comparatively little expenditure.
Citizens, schools, associations/clubs, etc. and guests to the area are being given the chance to improve their own exercise habits in a fun way, with the sports-science financial backing, geared towards users’ needs – and it is free of charge, close by and opened day and night.
The bond between councils, citizens and local economy is being strengthened. The place almost “belongs” to everyone and is, therefore, visited accordingly and also controlled.

 

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