The Social Village Manas Association

The Social Village Manas Association is a non-profit organization that supports initiatives for young and adult persons with disabilities in Kyrgyzstan.

Heike Fahlberg – Managing board –

is a curative education nurse and curative education teacher and has been managing a residential group for disabled women in a full inpatient facility in southern Germany for many years. She was able to fulfill her childhood dream – working in a Russian-speaking country – in 2016 in the form of an internship at the Ümüt-Nadjeschda Children’s Rehabilitation Center in Bishkek. In this context, she got to know the Social Village and has felt deeply connected to the local residents and staff since the first meeting. In 2016 she joined the support association and since 2017 she has been advising Gulja Takyrbashevas on social therapy issues by mail/Skype or during visits. In addition to this task, she has been the first board member since July 2021, is responsible for contact with the registry court and the tax office, writes the annual review together with Pauline Walesch and is in close contact with Kyrgyzstan. On the annual project support trips, Heike Fahlberg also gets a picture of life together in the Social Village.

Bigi Möhrle – deputy board member

studied organic agriculture and visited Kyrgyzstan for the first time in 2002 for several months as part of her studies. In 2006 she met the director of the Social Village Manas, Gulja Takerbasheva. Bigi Möhrle is one of the founders of the support association and has therefore been responsible for the project from the beginning. In the past years she has repeatedly visited projects in Kyrgyzstan.
One of her tasks is the contact with our donors, she also supports the Social Village with agricultural questions.

Extended board:
Five assessors form the extended board together with the executive board members. It makes important decisions about the approval of funding applications and developments in the association. Its members take on tasks such as volunteer coordination, public relations or the organization of the sale of felt products from the felt workshop of the Social Village and thus actively support the achievement of the association’s goals.

 Lena Halbig – Finances in Germany –

came to Kyrgyzstan in the fall of 2014 together with another volunteer as the “first generation” of volunteers in the Social Village Manas. Her time in this beautiful as well as fascinating country and the Social Village Manas was very formative. She was particularly impressed by the facility with its unique features and the pioneering work it does. Lena Halbig has been working in the support association since her return to Germany in 2015.

Lena Halbig is responsible for the account management, the supervision of projects of the Social Village Manas as well as the related communication with the Support Association. She is also the data protection officer.

Pauline Walesch – Finances in Kyrgyzstan –

studies bioinformatics in Halle (Saale) and did a voluntary service in the Social Village in 2016 before her studies. After an unforgettable year in Kyrgyzstan, she would like to continue supporting the residents from Germany and therefore joined the support association. Since 2018 she supports the extended board and is contact person for volunteers since the end of 2019.

She is responsible for the controlling Kyrgyzstan and the finances on site as well as the annual reviews or donation circulars and the homepage.
In addition to her work for the association, she regularly visits the Social Village.

Pia Drechsler

was a volunteer in the Social Village together with Lena Weber in 2016, after completing her bachelor’s degree (social pedagogy). Since her return, she has been active in the support association and initially took over the coordination of volunteer work. Since the summer of 2020, she has been taking minutes at the regularly held conferences of the Extended Board. After her time in the Social Village, she was keen to keep in touch with the Social Village and continue to be involved – now in a different way. She is happy to be involved in a project where she has a personal connection to residents and staff.

Simone Ott – Secretary of the organization –

is a farmer by profession and a youth and home educator, is married and has 3 children. She lives and works in Ravensburg, where our association is also “at home”. Simone Ott has been an active member for many years and is part of the extended board of the association. When Bigi Möhrle and Laurens Krämer founded the Förderverein Sozialdorf Manas 15 years ago and told her about the ambitious and courageous work of Gulja Takyrbasheva, she was enthusiastic and impressed by the initiative and the country. The country of one of her favorite writers, Chingis Aitmatov. This enthusiasm for the project has remained until today, she tries to continue to convince many people of the necessity and meaningfulness of the support association by selling the beautiful felt art.

Laura Lindig

worked as a volunteer at the Ümüt-Nadjeschda Children’s Center from 2015 to 2016. She supported the students in their everyday life or helped with the preparation of lessons. During her working time she visited the Social Village Manas. This was a very interesting experience for Laura. A friend of hers got involved with the Social Village Manas and that’s how Laura became a member of the Förderverein, since 2022 Laura is part of the extended board. At the moment she is supporting the Förderverein with the design of new flyers for the Social Village.

General meeting

It is the highest body of the Förderverein Sozialdorf Manas and takes place at least once a year. Here, all members of the association have the opportunity to help shape the work of the association.

The Förderverein

Represents the Social Village Manas in Germany and in Europe. He is committed to helping people in the German-speaking world and beyond to learn about and support the social village. At least once a year, members of the project support organization travel to Kyrgyzstan in order to be in direct contact with the project management, the staff and residents, and to discuss development and support needs. We support the establishment not only financially, but also help the employees with advice and action. If we can not answer questions ourselves, we are looking for experts who can advise us.

Our most important task is donation. On the one hand, to contribute to the running costs of the social village without which it could not exist, and on the other hand to promote projects and developments there. For this, we are always looking for cooperation with other organizations, such as the Swiss fund for development work “Acacia”.

Very important is the personal exchange. We want to see how the residents are treated, how they are cared for and how they have developed. We are looking at how the social village of Manas has developed and how the project funds have been used. At the same time, we learn about the needs, the needs and the necessities for new projects. In order to be able to support the projects, we are looking for donors * afterwards.

The members of the Association work voluntarily.

Partners and references of the Social Village Manas Association

Our partners are

  • ACACIA – Foundation for Development Cooperation
    The social village Manas / Kyrgyzstan was taken in 2012 by ACACIA from Basel / Switzerland, as a promising project. The donations to Acacia are entitled to Swiss deduction of rights)
  • German Embassy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
    (Great support for the construction of the first house!)
  • Friends of the Education Rudolf Steiner eV
    (Cooperation in the project “Construction of the second residential house and a felt workshop”)
  • Eva Engler Graphic artist
    (Layouts for flyers, etc. of the social village)
  • Hostweb – Hostserver GmbH
    (Support: Home for our site)
  • Children’s rehabilitation center Nadjeshda
    (Long-term cooperation of projects)
  • Martin et Karczinski
    (Metk support the social village of Manas extensively)
  • Zwecklöffeln
    (Behind this concept are not only four people, who are the initiators of an extraordinary idea, but also all those who have been and are, are making an effective contribution to the expansion of Sozialdorf Manas and other projects with their great commitment.

The German versions of several documents can be found here.