By Drazen Simlesa, RIPESS EU General Coordinator

Here are the words from Drazen Simlesa addressed to RIPESS EUROPE members, two weeks after the earthquake that suffered Croatia on December 29th, 2020 : “Many of you were writing to me in the past few days and asking about the situation in Croatia regarding the hard earthquake that hit us on 29th of December. Magnitude was 6.4 and epicentre was 25km south from our educational centre that many of you visited during our General Assembly now more than two years ago.  We were hit quite hard and there are no houses on our farm, educational centre and in the village that didn’t suffer from some kind of damage. Luckily our members and people are okay, aside of psychological shock and fear, because even till now we are still getting many aftershock earthquakes will less power, but enough to shake the ground and our calmness.

The earthquake caused great damage to the Recycled Estate Education Center – we need your help to rebuild it together!

Green Network of Activist Groups (ZMAG) is an organization that brings together organic gardeners, practitioners of applicable technologies and eco-building, permaculture designers, researchers of equitable social models of organization and equal interpersonal relationships, and environmental activists.

In our village Vukomerić there almost isn’t a sole house without damage from the earthquake so we immediately set out to help everyone, repaired the damage on the roofs, removed the collapsed chimneys and did everything else necessary so people can safely spend the winter in their homes.

After we saved the houses on the Estate and in our village, just after the New Year’s day ZMAG’s construction team headed to the hardest hit areas South of us – to Banija where we help in the towns of Sisak and Glina and the surrounding villages. Our knowledge and skills in the field of construction that we have been developing for years are now reaching their full potential as we participate in the most basic repair of damaged buildings. We coordinate teams of volunteers and work at several locations in order to make homes of the local population safe before the coldest part of the winter. In addition to physical work, we do not neglect moral support, we talk and provide words of comfort and encouragement to our hosts, and we volunteer in delivering supplies to homes in remote areas. We are there as long as we can build and provide support, and then we return to our Recycled Estate.

Our main facility – Educational Centre on the Recycled Estate is among the most affected buildings. For us, this is our main workspace with our office, main kitchen, guest bedroom, library and lecture hall where numerous workshops and courses are held. It is a place of meetings and gatherings, a place where all study visits to the Estate begin, where we host kindergartens and schools, a place where other organizations and institutions hold their meetings, strategic planning and field trips. The Educational Centre is also our livelihood, a form of self-financing of our organization Green Network of Activist Groups (ZMAG).

ZMAG is hereby asking for help in the form of financial contributions in order to help us repair the Recycled Estate so that we can open it for the public and all our users as soon as possible. Estimated renovation costs are around 70,000.00 kn (9,270.36 Euro). We have opened a separate account for this purpose and we will present receipts for each settled account and each item spent during and after the repair.

“Grateful in advance and we continue to build and live together, Your ZMAG

For payments from Croatia (HRK):

Recipient: Green Network of Activist Groups, Vukomerić 23/3, 10418 Dubranec
Bank: Erstesteiermärkische banka
IBAN: HR0724020061500092001
Model: HR 00
Reference number: 01-2021
Purpose: Donation for the renovation of the Recycled Estate Educational Centre

For payments from abroad (EUR):

Account holder: Green Network of Activist Groups, Vukomerić 23/3, 10418 Dubranec
Name of bank: Erstesteiermärkische Bank
Address of bank: Jadranski trg 3a, 51000 Rijeka, Croatia
Account No (IBAN):  HR0724020061500092001
Purpose: Donation for the renovation of the Recycled Estate Educational Center