23 Mountaineering Federations united
European Union of Mountaineering Associations (EUMA) Founded in Munich
Last weekend 23 mountaineering federations from as many countries founded the European Union of Mountaineering Associations (EUMA). The foundation ass embly took place on 25 November in the Alpine Museum of the German Alpine Club in Munich.
“This is an important day for the European mountaineering community”, said the newly elected and visibly delighted president Roland Stierle shortly after the meeting. “We now are able to pool the interests of European mountaineers and powerfully represent them.” The EUMA considers topics related to mountaineering infrastructure and safety as well as nature conservation to be its core tasks, with the overall focus on mountaineering as popular sports. Different ideas and proposals had been developed for several years, before an international working group with representatives from eight federations1 was commissioned to create the prerequisites for the foundation. A year later, the working group presented a concept of the new association, draft articles of association and a financing concept. The result is remarkable: The foundation assembly, chaired by the president of the German Alpine Club, Josef Klenner, conducted smoothly, result-oriented and in a good and positive atmosphere. This is not to be taken for granted – considering the involvement of 23, in many respects very different, federations from all parts of Europe. A Strong European Voice for Mountaineers The delegates chose Belgium as EUMA’s domicile, which may not necessarily be an obvious location for a mountaineering association at first sight. Yet, taking a closer look, the geographical proximity to Brussels is logical: The new association aims to be a strong European voice of mountaineers and their voice should be heard on the European level – particularly by the institutions of the European Union and the European Parliament. “United we can make substantial contributions to increasing safety in mountain sports and to improving the network of mountain huts and trails. And together we can also work effectively to promote nature conservation and free access to Europeans mountain-areas”, comments Roland Stierle on the tasks ahead. In total, EUMA represents 2.5 million mountaineers, who are members of the individual national federations. Next Steps In Munich the delegates elected a five-member presidium, which will now conclude the formal foundation of EUMA. An essential part will be the enlisting to the register of associations in Belgium, which should be done by January 2018. Until then, the postal address of the administrative office and a website shall be made available as well. In addition to the president, the presidium consists of the deputy-president, Jan Bloudek (Czech Mountaineering Association) as well as the vice presidents Dr. Ingrid Hayek (Austrian Alpine Association), Juan Jesús Ibáñez Martín (Spanish Mountain Sports and Climbing Federation) and Bojan Rotovnik (Alpine Association of Slovenia). Roland Stierle is looking forward to the tasks ahead: “I consider the election as founding president by the general assembly to be a great personal appreciation. I am thankful for the great support and I am committed and determined to speak for our common goals.” Founding Associations of EUMAAlbania (Albanian Mountaineering Federation), Austria (Austrian Alpine Club), Belgium (Climbing and Mountaineering Belgium), Croatia (Croatian Mountaineering Association), Cyprus (Mountaineering and Climbing Federation of Cyprus), Czech Republic (Czech Mountaineering Federation), France (Federation of French Alpine and Mountain Clubs), Macedonia (Macedonian Mountaineering Sport Federation), Germany (German Alpine Club), Greece (Hellenic Federation of Mountaineering and Climbing), Italy (Italian Alpine Club), Liechtenstein (Liechtensteiner Alpine Club), Malta (Malta Climbing Club), Montenegro (Mountaineering Association of Montenegro), Netherlands (Royal Dutch Mountaineering and Climbing Club), Norway (Norwegian Climbing Federation), Poland (Polish Mountaineering Association), Romania (Romanian Alpine Club), Serbia (Mountaineering Association of Serbia), Slovakia (Slovak Mountaineering Union), Slovenia (Alpine Association of Slovenia), Spain (Spanish Mountain Sports and Climbing Federation), United Kingdom (British Mountaineering Council).