Kathi & Felix
We are Kathi and Felix and are behind the founding of Move-ING eV We are fascinated by East Africa and deeply convinced that we want to make the world a bit fairer.
We share curiosity and the willingness to fully engage with foreign cultures and to live and work with the local people. Mastering their everyday life together with people makes our work so lively. This is the only way we can develop a feeling for the problems that people are confronted with every day and what concerns them. The trust we have gained and the numerous insights we are granted are priceless for us.
We got to know each other in Tanzania at the beginning of 2017 and quickly realized how well we complement each other and how well we work as a team. So the decision was made to jointly found a non-profit association. Move-ING eV was founded in summer 2018.
We both made our first project trips to Ethiopia independently of each other during school, which were so important for each of us that we have since gone there for a few weeks or months every year to actively support or implement projects directly on site. These experiences led both of us to decide to study civil engineering after graduating from high school.
Since 2010 we have been volunteering in international development cooperation. For example, even before the association was founded, we worked and managed private projects on behalf of aid organizations on well projects, school projects and various other projects in the social and engineering sector in East Africa, so that in total we have already spent several years in East Africa. Our longest stays each included one year in which we lived in Tanzania (Kathi) and Ethiopia (Felix), which made the respective cultures even more familiar to us.
We particularly value cooperation on an equal footing with our local project partners and continuous knowledge transfer in order to promote sustainability and independence. For us, close contact with the people on site is crucial, because in our opinion a successful project is based on trusting, fair and respectful cooperation, in which one can discuss openly and on an equal footing. Important aspects are above all the dismantling of language barriers and the willingness to learn with and from each other.
As young civil engineers, we not only want to support the projects financially, we also develop sustainable and innovative technical concepts that we implement on site together with our local partners.
It is very important to us to maintain the independence of our local partners. We support wherever we can, but are guided by the basic idea of “helping people to help themselves”. For us, this means that we apply our specialist knowledge and engineering skills where they really mean an increase, since the technology used is little known on site and the necessary equipment is therefore missing. If local people are able to independently develop sustainable solutions, we deliberately hold back and only act in an advisory capacity. This is how we want to avoid initiative being undermined or jobs being lost to us. With regard to financial support, it is important for both of us that our local partners know that we only support the implementation of sub-projects, but do not pay long-term costs for the project. All the more important are the above-mentioned sustainable project structures, which are self-sustaining in the long term and, in the best case, serve our local project partners as a further source of income.