Grünblick- Sustainable water management- Building a traditional wooden boat yourself

In the week of 25.10.-31.10.2020, the third work camp on the topic of "sustainable water management" took place in Rastatt in the Black Forest for a small group of participants aged 16-25. The aim of the week was to get orientation for green and sustainable job opportunities. In order to make the occupational field of water as tangible as possible, the participants were allowed to build their own traditional wooden boat together with one of the last wooden boat builders on the Rhine. The wooden boat was launched at the end of the week so that the participants had the opportunity to experience the self-built boat in action.
This article:
18.12.2020 / 11 Uhr
Dominik Lechner

Traditional craftsmanship meets young people hungry for knowledge

The construction of the traditional wooden boat was accompanied by Heiko Kircher, a master carpenter in the fourth generation, who was able to inspire the young people for the craft with his open manner. At the beginning of the week, there was a guided tour through his workshop, which at times resembled a museum. In the workshop there were old machines that his great-grandfather had already worked with. However, for the construction of the wooden boat that the young people built during this week, modern machines and tools were used that were much easier to operate. Thus, the young people were able to lend a hand themselves.

On the first day of work, the young people were introduced to the craft, the components of the boat were laid out and the places for screwing etc. were marked so that they could start assembling the boat the next day. In the following days, the parts were screwed or nailed together. For this, the boat had to be strongly clamped in order to achieve the bend in the bow. When the basic shape of the boat was finished, the finishing touches were made, such as sanding the outer edges. The wood was also varnished. Finally, the participants worked out the oars and attached a chain to the boat. The boat was christened "Grünblick 2020" and now bears this name on the front outside on a wooden sign carved by the participants themselves.

Trip with a professional fisherman

After some theoretical input on the subject of fish farming and a visit to a museum where everything revolves around the profession of fisherman, the young people went out on the water with a professional fisherman on the third day. Clad in life jackets, the participants were introduced to the basics of the profession, from casting the nets to the behaviour of the fish to the actual day-to-day work. For some of the young people who were doing their Voluntary Ecological Year at the time of the project and were released for this week, the trip was a very exciting and practical addition.

Online tour of a hydroelectric power plant

In order to cover the full range of career opportunities related to water, the participants were given a guided tour of an ENBW hydroelectric power plant. Due to Corona, the tour was conducted online. Thanks to modern technology, the young people were able to gain an insight into the power plant. The participants were able to ask questions to an employee of the power plant, who was on site at the time, and thus got exclusive insights into the daily work on site.

The boat is launched

On the fifth day, the five-metre forty boat was finally completed and, to the delight of the young people, was ready for its first outing. The boat was carefully launched at a quiet spot on the Altrhein. The participants were visibly proud of the result and now had the opportunity to take their self-built boat for a short tour on the water.

Outdoor coaching

After the SDG workshop on the first day had already set the first impulses that encouraged the participants to think about their career choice, the last day of the itinerant coaching was about dealing with their own life path in a very concrete way. The professional coaching aimed at clarifying the participants' personal wishes and potentials, independent of everyday influences (school, parents and social environment). Thus, the participants received final impulses regarding their career orientation as well as concrete guidance for the next steps back into everyday life. In keeping with the theme of the week, the walking coaching was held in a dreamlike setting of riverside forests and the Rhine. It was a good place to reflect on one's individual path, independent of everyday challenges and influences.

Support for the project

The "Grünblick" project is funded under the ESF federal programme "Promoting Vocational Education and Training for Sustainable Development. Via green key competences to climate and resource-friendly action at work - BBNE" by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety and the European Social Fund.