Freiburg and its partners all over the world
On October 20th 1988 two very uneven partners - Wiwilí with its 12 000 and Freiburg with its 200 000 inhabitants - sealed a city friendship which continues until the present day despite their social, economical and cultural differences.
The aim of the city friendship is above all to provide humanitarian aid for the people living in Wiwilí. The origins of these special connections between Freiburg and Wiwilí date back to the year 1980. It was then that the Freiburg physician Albrecht Tonio Pflaum started his work for the German Voluntary Service Overseas with the setting up of a medical supply station for Wiwilí. In 1983, Pflaum was assassinated by the Contra rebels who were fighting the Sadinistic revolutionary government.
From the beginning it has been the aim of the Freundeskreis Tonio Pflaum and the Feiburg-Wiwilí Association to continue the work of Tonio Pflaum. This was made possible with financial and organizational support of the city of Freiburg and the European Union.
The financial aid from Freiburg helped to realize projects in the areas of drinking water supply, agriculture and forestry, health, the education of both pupils and teachers and the establishment of a centre for culture and leisure. Further education for small farmers is also supported, and a Casa Materna was built, in which women are looked after before and after giving birth.
The driving forces behind these projects in Nicaragua are the Freiburg-Wiwilí Association and the Association for Communal Development ADEM (Asociación de Desarollo Municipal Wiwilí). How deeply the friendship between the two cities is rooted in the hearts of the Freiburg citizens became visible in the autumn of 1998: when hurricane Mitch destroyed large parts of Wiwilí, over 600 000 German Marks were donated for the city's reconstruction. In addition to aid for general reconstruction 40 new houses were built with the help of this money. Building materials, medical drugs and food were brought in containers to the destroyed city. A builder's yard is still working on the reconstruction of many buildings today.