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German CIMIC in Vojkovici

By 1Lt. Javier Donesteve
First published in
SFOR Informer#106, February 7, 2001

Sarajevo - A new roof and heating were provided for an elementary school in Vojkovici, Republika Srpska, in the German Battle Group Area of Responsibility (AOR).
With 630 children from 7 to 15 years old, the Osnovna skola "Aleksa Santic," directed by Zivorad Kuzmanovic, welcomed the donations from Germany that made these improvements possible, through the mediation of the German CIMIC Unit, co-located with the German Battle Group in Rajlovac.
Commanded by Lt. Col. Michael Stelter, the German CIMIC Unit includes headquarters, three reconnaissance teams and four project teams, with a total strength of 40 men. "The recce teams search where to invest our funds, and then our job begins," said 1st Lt. Guido Warlitz, project officer. "Each project team includes an engineer, a technician and an interpreter, who study the viability of every request. Later on, the financial branch gives, or not, the final approval."
Warlitz and his team have been supervising the works from the beginning to the end. "Fifteen thousand, five hundred Deutsche Mark have been invested here with donations from "Lachen Helfen" (1,500 DM) and the town of Hagen in Westphalen (14,000 DM)," he said.
"Lachen Helfen" (Helping for Smiling) is a foundation, supported by German soldiers and their families, that collects money and other goods.
On the other hand, Hagen has a partnership with First Company of Panzer-Grenadier Battalion 323, at present day in BiH. Representing the unit is Company Sgt. Maj., Warrant Officer 1 Toenjes Martens, who said, "The partnership between our coy and Hagen was born 38 years ago."

Related links:
CIMIC
Nations of SFOR: Germany