Manfred Stüber and Margit Palokangas is a part of SUS’ Swedish network and have been engaged in SUS since the beginning. Photo: Private
Commited to SUS since 1986
|Manfred (Manne) Stüber and Margit Palokangas met Rokeya through SCI in 1986. They are still part of Rokeya’s Swedish network. Manfred tells the romantic story of how they met:|
|I was born in Berlin, Germany in 1949. This meant hearing the adults talking about the war, something terrible in the near past I had great difficulties to quite understand. Two uncles, one brother of my mother and one of my father never came back. I inherited their names. We were still silently hoping…
Our house had been bombed to a ruin by New Year 1943/44, but was mainly rebuilt. Otherwise ruins were a common site. First later I learned about all outrage that had eminated from our country.
I slowly understood after moving to Sweden 1957 due to fathers work. I was eight years old very quickly learned fluent Swedish while I still preserved my German. I tried to handle this not so easy inheritage and I think both myself personally as well as Germany as a country have found a way of reconciliation. All this has left me with a strong concern about peace and friendship over borders – but never at the cost of personal freedom.
1974 I went to my first SCI (Service Civil International) workcamp in the Faroe Islands. Through SCI I met Olof Meurling. Ten years later I led a workcamp in Stockholm. One of the participants was a Finnish women, Margit Palokangas. At the end of the camp I asked her if I could not pay her a visit in Oulu. She did not say no. Coming there our hearts said YES!
1986, while still living in Finland, Margit joined a camp in Turku. On the way from the station she seriously hurt her leg. It had to be put in plaster. A week later a Bengali women in sari also arrived. Her name was Rokeya. The two women thus did not work in the ship project but in the Third World Shop. Talking about their male relations Margit remarked: ”Olof – I know him. He is a friend of Manne’s…”
So it came that Margit volonteered a time as a dentist in Dhaka. I visited her there and we went together to Netrakona in December 1987. The women with the sewingmachines were in Rokeya’s house. At the already purchased SUS-ground there was a plate saying a building would soon be erected here. Rokeya and me were drawing an outline on a paper. Meanwhile other activities such as school, healthcare and familyplanning were going on in temporary solutions.
In 2012 I visited SUS with three pupils from my school whom I helped to do research for their examination paper. They made interviews in the Shelter house. The three were deeply impressed by the width and depth of what SUS does. And so I am…
These historical snapshots commemorate 30 years of SUS