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We say goodbye...

Dec 13, 2021 / Bianca Elzenbaumer, Co-president of CIPRA International
With sadness we communicate that on 10 November 2021 the German commons activist Silke Helfrich has died in a tragic mountain accident in Liechtenstein. The 54-years old acclaimed author, sociologist and pedagogue had been in Schaan (LI) to contribute with her outstanding expertise on fair and just economies to the development of CIPRA International.
Silke Heflrich
Image caption:
© privat

Before the start of our CIPRA event, Helfrich went for a short hike as she was passionate about the Alps and nature. When she did not show up at our event and we could not reach her on the phone, we informed the police that we are missing her. The police, together with the mountain rescue team, engaged in an intense search with over 80 rescue workers, who were equipped with rescue dogs and drones with infrared cameras. Only in the very late evening her dead body could be found. Helfrich, who was an experienced hiker, probably went off the trail in search for mushrooms without realizing that she was entering dangerous territory. There she fell and incurred fatal injuries. 

In our thoughts we are close to her family and all the people who have been close to her. At CIPRA we are committed to honour Helfrich’s focus on the commons and their innovative governance processes, which are of particular cultural and future-focused relevance for the Alps.

We also would like to thank the police, the rescue and care team for their competent work and quick action.

Here you find an obituary in German on the website of the Commons Institute, which was founded by Helfrich.