Category: Activities

Support for the Chapelle de la Rencontre project

Support for the Chapelle de la Rencontre project

Due to its location on the France-Germany border in the Quartier du Port du Rhin in Strasbourg, the Kapelle der Begegnung (chapel of encounters) is intended to help strengthen social cohesion in this area, which is currently undergoing major restructuring, and to strengthen and intensify Franco-German relations. Built as a sign of reconciliation after the Second World War, this chapel represents a mindset and history that the two churches (EKIBA-Protestant Church in Baden, and UEPAL – Union of Protestant Churches of Alsace and Lorraine) through their representatives (Dr. Jochen Cornelius- Bundschuh and Christian Albecker) wish to revive today.

A large call for donations to finance the construction work, which began in spring 2021, was launched so that the project can become a symbolic meeting place between French and Germans, but also between people of different origins and religions.

Additional Information: https://www.paroissebordsdurhin.eu/

Read More
The Franco-German Voice of the Youth

The Franco-German Voice of the Youth

Like other large French and German companies, Europa-Park wanted to take part in the ‘Franco-German Voices of Young People’ project, based on a large-scale citizen survey of young people: https://www.soscisurvey.de/consultation_france-deutschland/
A great opportunity for French and German teenagers to make their voice heard! 

The initiative is under the high patronage of the presidents of the Franco-German friendship groups of the National Assembly and the German Bundestag (Mr. Christophe Arend and Mr. Gunther Krichbaum). The aim is to build a bridge between the two countries, and to develop and implement ideas. After analysing the information collected, a feedback phase is organised in the National Assembly to start implementing the ideas received. There will also be joint events in several French and German areas.

The survey is open to all young people between the ages of 16 and 30, and participation is possible until 30th July 2021.
https://www.ffa-dff.org/files/2021/re%CC%80glement%20F%20duree.pdf

Read More
Meeting with the French ambassador in Germany

Meeting with the French ambassador in Germany

Invited by the Franco-German Committee for Cross-Border Cooperation (AGZ), Ms. Anne-Marie Descôtes, French Ambassador in Berlin, was received by Toni Vetrano, the mayor of the city of Kehl, and had the opportunity to exchange views with Mr. Michael Mack.

The city of Kehl is an important engine of European cooperation and is the location of the headquarters of several important Franco-German organisations, such as the Euro Institute, Infobest or the European Consumer Centre, as well as the Joint Secretariat of the Upper Rhine Conference. The visit was about the partnership between various structures of German-French cooperation, with many current topics, such as the problems of commuters and the expected consequences of the current health crisis, being discussed. The Ambassador recognised the key role played by these structures and the committee in strengthening the transnational links between France and Germany, which are now more necessary than ever to make Europe tangible and useful for its citizens. On the evening of the start of the conference on the future of Europe, on 9th May in Strasbourg, the ambassador’s visit to Kehl was therefore of great importance.

Read More
Company Discovery Day

Company Discovery Day

The Franco-German Discovery Day was launched in 2006 on the initiative of the French and German governments, giving schoolchildren from both countries an insight into the Franco-German working world. This offer is open to all young people, especially those who have limited access to international exchange programs. The initiative aims to arouse interest in young people regarding in the language and culture of the other country.

More than a quarter of the 5000 employees at Europa-Park are French citizens. Many of the current projects are oriented towards France; Franco-German friendship was an important concern of the Mack family from the very beginning of the foundation of their company.

A discussion forum was created in digital format together with a BTS class (Brevet de Technicien Supérieur – technical training class) at the René Cassin-Gymnasium in Strasbourg, in which numerous questions about the organisation of the company and human resources in a Franco-German context were discussed.  The pupils and their teachers then had the opportunity to learn further detailed information from the representatives of Europa-Park in a question-and-answer session.

Further information: http://www.ofaj.org/programmes-formations/journee-decouverte.html

Read More
Meeting with the Committee on Cross-Border Cooperation

Meeting with the Committee on Cross-Border Cooperation

As a priority measure of the Aachen Treaty, the AGZ is intended to support and strengthen cooperation at the borders by offering concrete solutions to the difficulties that the residents of the border regions may face in their daily lives, especially in the areas of transport, employment, healthcare and development.

Composed of representatives from the state, the regional authorities close to the border (states, border regions and departments, Eurodistricts) and parliamentarians from both countries, the work program of the AGZ moves within the subject areas of economy/energy/environment, transport infrastructure and education.

The exchange of views was therefore focused on the institutions that are active at the Franco-German level and on the most important structural reforms currently being planned (transport infrastructure, education and training systems, cultural policy), but also on the administrative constraints that companies face and want to develop further on the other side of the Rhine, as well as the inadequacies of Rheinish integration during the extraordinary context of the COVID-19 crisis.

Additional Information: https://www.agz-cct.eu/agz-cct-de

Read More
Meeting with the Centre for European Consumer Protection

Meeting with the Centre for European Consumer Protection

With its 47-strong team (including 27 lawyers), the Centre for European Consumer Protection handles 18,000 cross-border complaints per year. It thus offers a range of free and specialised services for consumers in the border region, particularly in the areas of tourism, electronic commerce, the automotive industry, real estate and services.

The EVZ played a major role in the COVID-19 crisis and provided the residents of the border regions with practical and up-to-date information about the respective regulations on both sides of the Rhine.

As this crisis had a subsequent direct impact on cross-border workers and the social climate in German companies, the unequal treatment (‘double taxation’ of cross-border workers) with regard to short-time work benefits (‘KUG’) among French and German workers was the focus of the exchange between the honorary consul and the representatives of the ZEV.

Additional Information: http://www.cec-zev.eu

Read More
Parlez-vous français?

Parlez-vous français?

At the invitation of the Honorary Consul Michael Mack, the winners of the state award in the French solo category and the members of the Baden-Württemberg state jury of the Federal Foreign Languages Competition gathered in Europa-Park on 12th September 2020.

In order to make learning French in Baden-Württemberg’s schools more attractive, the Honorary Consul Michael Mack decided to give additional awards to those students who took the first three places in the state foreign language competition in the ‘Solo’ category for the school year 2019/2020. He invited the winners and their families to Europa-Park for Alsace Day.
At the invitation of Michael Mack, the judges for the state of Baden-Württemberg for the federal foreign language competition also visited the park on the same day. In cooperation with the Director of Studies Paolo Vetrano, State Representative of the Federal Foreign Languages Competition, their meeting took place in the French quarter of Europa-Park. Everyone involved, including award-winning students, enjoyed a lively exchange of views in the relaxed park atmosphere. We wish you all a successful start to the new school year. À très bientôt!

Read More
Vive la Freundschaft!

Vive la Freundschaft!

Many guests from Germany and France attended Michael Macks’ Consular reception on the French national holiday.

Michael Mack organised the Consular reception on 10th July 2020 at Europa-Park in Rust for the French national holiday. The aim was to show the Honorary Consul’s friendship and affection for the country, especially after the borders between Germany and France had been closed for three months due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It was for this reason that guests from various professional backgrounds were invited to the reception. Politicians, scientists, doctors, entrepreneurs and key players in the realm of civil society from the Consular district of Freiburg & Tübingen and France gathered on the terrace of Balthasar Castle, alongside the representatives of French citizens residing in Germany. After the Honorary Consul Mack, Catherine Veber, Consul General from Stuttgart, and Volker Schebesta, State Secretary in the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport Baden-Württemberg,welcomed the guests. Their speeches were accompanied by music from the Franco-German choir from Freiburg.
In addition, videos by MackMedia were broadcast, including a video on Franco-German friendship that was created for French national holiday together with numerous prominent personalities from both banks of the Rhine. The video message from Jean-Michel Marsal from Mulhouse was particularly touching. The life of the Covid-19 patient was saved thanks to a collaboration of doctors from Alsace and Freiburg, and so he ended his message with a proclamation of ‘Vive la friendship!’.

Read More
Cross-border transport projects at the Upper Rhine

Cross-border transport projects at the Upper Rhine

Michael Mack welcomed the participants of the Franco-German transport conference.

On 13th July 2020, a transport conference for the representatives of the German and French municipalities and economytook place at Europa-Park in Rust. It was organised by the Bundestag member Peter Weiß and his French parliamentary colleague Antoine Herth. Both are members of the Franco-German Parliamentary Assembly. 

In addition to cross-border transport projects such as the Rhine Valley Railway, new rail connections and public bus routes between France and Germany, the networking of bike connections and tourism networking were also discussed. The results of this discussion should be presented at a joint meeting of the transport committees from the two countries. 

In his welcoming address, Honorary Consul Michael Mack emphasised that for Europa-Park, of which he is the Managing Partner, the further expansion of the transport infrastructure between Alsace and Baden is important not only for economic reasons, but also to promote cultural and political integration.

Read More
Friends from Germany and France together again

Friends from Germany and France together again

Brigitte Klinkert, President of the Haut-Rhin Department Council, visited the Honorary Consul Michael Mack after the German-French border reopened.

On 22nd June 2020, a week after the German-French border reopened, the French Honorary Consul Michael Mack received Ms. Brigitte Klinkert, President of the Haut-Rhin Department Council. During the Coronavirus crisis, the two of them worked very hard to maintain Franco-German cooperation. For this reason, the main topic of their meeting was the continuation of the projects of cooperation between the Department of Haut-Rhin and the consular district of Freiburg & Tübingen, such as the Post-Fessenheim Plan and the construction of the Freiburg-Colmar railway line. Immediately following this, Brigitte Klinkert was appointed ‘ministre déléguée’ for integration measures at the beginning of July. Michael Mack congratulated her on this new position.

Read More