“All of a sudden, three young men arrived with wheelbarrows and helped a family to clear out their completely ruined basement. They had come from Siegen,” said Dirk Unschuld, who is FC’s historian and archiver. He lives in Latershofen, a few hundred metres above Ahrweiler. “My house thankfully hasn’t been hit, but what has gone on in front of our front door is apocalyptic. For me, it is par for the course that I’ve spent every free minute since Thursday trying to help people here. I was born in Adenau and the Ahrtal is my home. What has happened here, I can’t describe it with words. I get up every day and see where I can help. The readiness to help from people is overwhelming. You meet people from across Germany who are offering their help – it’s incredible.”
Countless FC fan clubs, ultra groups and FC fans have been busy in the hard-hit areas of Ahrweiler and Erftstadt. They are helping with the clean-up operation and have started multiple collections, in order to help those in need. Dirk Unschuld added: “The regions in southern NRW and northern Rheinland-Pfalz are FC strongholds. Here, many fans and fan clubs are present. Therefore, it is so important that 1. FC Köln does as much as possible to stand by the people here.” Those working at Geißbockheim, as well as their families, have also been hit by the flooding. The staff at FC quickly sprung into action and collected donations and clothes for those who need it most. There are also clean-up groups, those keen to help and those who have the necessary tools to help the families and relatives.
“The stories of the people in the worst hit areas and the pictures of the devastation are heart-breaking,” said FC Vice-President, Carsten Wettich. “It is very impressive, how the FC family comes together in times of crisis. In the name of all at 1. FC Köln, I want to thank all those helping, all fan groups, ultra groups, fans and friends. Every form of help is needed, and FC is helping where it can.”
1. FC Köln, alongside Telekom and Bayern Munich, came together to donate 100.000€ to the victims of the flooding catastrophe. “This is a first step as an immediate support measure. We will continue to help more with the support of our Foundation. Since last week, FC employees have been organising collections of clothes and heading into the region to help out. This level of engagement makes me proud,” said Wettich.
FC Frauen will play a benefit tournament in Andernach on Sunday 25th July, against SG 99 Andernach and SV Berghofen. Nicole Bender, FC Frauen Sporting Director, and players Peggy Kuznik and Rachel Rinast have all played in Bad Neuenahr. The proceeds raised on the day by the supporters will go to the families of the Andernach players badly affected by the floods. Sascha Glass’ side will play with black armbands in remembrance of those who lost their lives.
The 1. FC Köln under-21s decided that they would donate their entire team kitty to Ahrweiler BC. The pitch in Ahrweiler is completely destroyed and the U21s were keen to do something to help a sports club in the area. The under-21s are playing a friendly against Mainz U23s on Friday in Nörtershausen. Fans are allowed to attend if they are vaccinated, have recovered or have been tested. All proceeds will be donated to the club, with Mainz also taking part.
On the opening day of the new season, the FC players will wear black armbands against Hertha BSC as a mark of respect to those who lost their lives.
For those who wish to help with donations, the FC Foundation have set up an account in order to do so.
Stiftung 1. FC Köln IBAN: DE98 5012 0383 0000 9597 67 Subject: Hochwasserhilfe
€ 79.99 *