The MOMAr partner organisation from Germany, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Digital Affairs based in the Saxony-Anhalt region shares the progress of its Action Plan through an interview with Robert Neske, a representative of Freundeskreis Church of Schernebeck (stakeholder and responsible for the implementation of the activity in the Regional Action Plan).
In its Action Plan, Saxony-Anhalt presented the project “Förderkreis Schernebecker Kirche e.V.” aiming to establish a socio-cultural gathering place in the village of Schernebeck. The idea was to build a bakehouse in the church of the village to improve the cultural offer as well as the tourist marketing for the regional and supraregional population in a very rural and low-population region.
The current status of the project
The project of building an oven in the church arose while it was gradually being renovated. Robert Neske explains that the old coal cellar used to be the boiler room for the church, thus the idea of an oven in itself is not new. But, as the church's support association has been organising events for years, which are always accompanied by culinary delights, they came up with the idea of reusing the old coal cellar as a baking house.
The project application for the construction of the oven has been submitted and still requires minor revisions, in particular, due to inflation and the resulting increase in construction costs. Other aspects still need to be clarified with the historic preservation authority but the project managers expect to be able to start this year. But while the project starts, the church of Schernebeck already hosts successful events that attract people from the village but also the entire region!
The importance of MOMAr
As a local stakeholder of the MOMAr project, Freundeskreis Church of Schernebeck has been able to exchange information on funding opportunities during phase one. They were encouraged to apply for funding for this project and develop this ambitious project, now part of the Regional Action Plan of Saxony-Anhalt.
Find below the full interview of Robert Neske, a representative of Freundeskreis Church of Schernebeck (stakeholder responsible for the implementation of the activity in the Regional Action Plan).
MOMAr project manager: “Dear Robert, how did the idea of building an oven in a church come about?”
Robert: “The church of Schernebeck was gradually renovated. The old coal cellar, as we always call it, used to be the boiler room for the church. That means, the idea of an oven in itself is not new, it has always existed. Only the use becomes different. In old historical pictures, you can also see that the church once even had two chimneys. Since we -as the church's support association- have been organizing events for years, which are always accompanied by culinary delights, we came up with the idea of reusing the old coal cellar as a baking house.”
MOMAr project manager: “Now, it must be said that the village of Schernebeck is a village with about 220 inhabitants. How are the events received and who comes to your events?”
Robert: “At most events, the church is completely full. It is also interesting that our audience comes not only from the village but also from the entire region. Of course, this also depends on our program.”
MOMAr project manager: “Back to the oven in the former coal cellar, how do you finance the project as a relatively small association?”
Robert: “We are a member of the local stakeholder group of the Interreg Europe project MOMAr. In this circle, we presented our project idea. The stakeholder group is very heterogeneous, including representatives from the ministries, tourism associations, etc., we were able to intensively exchange information on funding opportunities and were encouraged to apply for funding for the project. So the project was developed during the first phase of MOMAr and became a part of the Regional Action Plan of Saxony-Anhalt in the MOMAr project.”
MOMAr project manager: “ What is the current status of the project?”
Robert: “The project application has been submitted and still requires minor revisions. On the one hand, this is due to inflation and the resulting increase in construction costs. On the other hand, minor aspects still need to be clarified with the historic preservation authority. But we expect to be able to start this year.”
MOMAr project manager: “And finally, your summary?”
Robert: “The MOMAr project and our first funding application were a great experience for us. On the one hand, we now have contacts with important institutions from the funding business as well as the tourism associations. On the other hand, despite the many hours we put into our first grant application, we realized that it can be worthwhile. And the second application will certainly write itself.”
MOMAr project manager: “Thank you very much for the interview.”
Robert: “We'd be happy to, and next time we'll have fresh bread from the new wood-burning oven!”