16 Jan 2012

Container on a Mission

An overseas container from Wörth laden with aid supplies fulfils a new purpose in Sri Lanka

Wörth, 16. Januar 2012 | Several weeks ago, a 40-foot container (c. 12 m long), loaded with aid supplies for Sri Lanka, left the Contargo Terminal in Wörth - and now, having completed its journey, it has finished up as valuable "building material" integrated into a newly-constructed canteen. In Karlsruhe, about 15 km away from Wörth, the initiator of this action, Hans-Peter Dentler, collects used and broken wheel chairs, crutches, walking aids, spectacles and hearing aids for use by handicapped people in developing countries. With endless patience, he and his team of volunteers repair these valuable items and store them in a former 'Notkirche' (emergency church building).

"Many disabled people in Sri Lanka just live out their whole life on the floor" Dentler explains. "A wheel chair gives them - quite literally - other perspectives and improves their quality of life significantly". Attending a school, going to work, taking part in social life are all activities which are only made possible by mobility. The repaired and overhauled items, together with other donations, are then transported many thousands of kilometres before they can help the "poorest of the poor".

10 years of cooperation 

Contargo Wörth is very glad to support the project. For the employees at the Wörth terminal, aid transports are always something special. It is a heart-warming experience to be part of a team sending help to places where it is really needed. The logistics service handed over a 40-foot container to the Mission at cost price and funded the transport with a special vehicle (side loader) to and from the Karlsruhe district of Oberreut.

"We were very impressed by Dentler's commitment" says Ulrich Weiß, shift supervisor at Contargo Wörth GmbH, "and especially by the fact that he habitually accompanies ever single container himself and gets to know the recipients of the support personally." The containers go to destinations which include Afghanistan, Peru, Bolivia, Kenya, Burundi, Ruanda, Nicaragua and Sri Lanka. And when a container has completed its journey, it becomes part of a new mission, even - as in the present case - sailing the Indian Ocean to acquire a new purpose as part of a canteen building in Sri Lanka!

"We were fascinated by the photos of the conversion of "our" container and its installation at its final site in the Ragama Rehabilitation Hospital, Sri Lanka," says Wolfgang Schlegel, Managing Director of Contargo Wörth GmbH, "you get to see our boxes from a quite different angle - especially in such exotic surroundings!"

While the Canteen Container in Sri Lanka has been gratefully initiated into its new capacity, on the Rhine, the next container-load from Oberreut is expectantly awaited, with much curiosity as to what the next conversion project "à la Sri Lanka" will be.


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