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Building Bridges to Community

By Rob Clements
Building Bridges to Community

The “Klarlweiher” lake in Haimhausen has been home to fishermen and nature lovers for many years. The paths and bridges were long used by local residents who, in days gone by, enjoyed leisurely walks around the lake’s perimeter. However, over time, vegetation has slowly grown up and bridges have fallen into disrepair, and it has been used less and less often.
Over the past few years, Fabian Holland, a Grade 10 student at Bavarian International School e.V., observed the decline of these pathways and bridges and often dreamed of what it would take to restore the area to its original glory. Fabian proposed his idea to the local fishing club in Haimhausen, a group similarly committed to restoring the banks of the Klarlweiher. With the support of Albert Lindbrunner, Head of the Fischerfreunde Haimhausen e.V., the project got under way.
Now Fabian has completed the construction of a 5-meter footbridge as part of his MYP personal project. The goal was not only to construct a bridge but also to initiate a chain of similar initiatives with the hope of restoring and rehabilitating the Klarlweiher waterway area, so that it may be enjoyed again.
The bridge, which showcases Fabian’s skills as a budding engineer, was the culmination of weeks of research, planning, designing, and building. He was quick off the line, completing the initial groundwork before the summer holidays and making steady progress into the fall.
On 30 September 2017, Fabian installed the bridge on the inner path around the far end of the main lake, with help from the BSA Munich Scout Troop 21 and members of the Fischerfreunde Haimhausen e.V. The volunteers also cut back a huge amount of vegetation to make the old paths more accessible. The bridge can easily be identified with a small plaque commemorating the achievement.
Fabian hopes that his project will inspire others to make their own contributions to the lakeshore. He is also planning to set up a program allowing BIS students to complete similar projects to rehabilitate the area.
Although his project is far from complete it has certainly made an impression on the other BIS students and we all look forward to seeing where the initiative will lead. l
Rob Clements is Head of Design Technology & MYP Design Teacher at Bavarian International School.

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