Living in community: the example of the village of Lümanda

Day organized by Saarte Koostöökogu of the LAG West-Estonian Islands Partnership. In the morning we visited Tallinn University of Technology, Kuressaare College and the Small Craft Competence Center. The Kuressaare College contributes to specific blue economy sectors in Saaremaa by providing engineering and entrepreneurship education and R&D services. Marine technology and hydrodynamics research is conducted by the Small Craft Competence Centre. They showed us the wave generator with 60 meters of test area for boats, the only such test in the Baltic.

The second visit was dedicated to the village of Lümanda (860 people) where we were at the house of Lümanda welcomed and guided by Jaanika Tiitson, member of the board of the LAG who showed and explained to us very interesting local development projects. Lümanda House is the community house where people met and where under one roof there are all the important facilities and services for the local population (sports and culture hall, music hall, fitness, library, post office , literature club, youth centre, school kitchen, etc.). There are six different organizations in the Lümanda house. The community house is connected to the Lümanda school, we were welcomed by the director who told us that they were very careful that the teachers felt good. They have 73 students and 29 employees. The families return to live in the village, where the community is very active.

Also very interesting is the village of Leedri which is under the protection of national heritage, surrounded by stone walls, with houses very close to each other. The village has 70 inhabitants, the same number of young and old people, 25 farms, a strong tradition and a connection with each other. As part of the GAL project, they have repaired the old windmill, which was also community work. They have a juniper syrup production which is run as a family business based on local resources. Also on local resources is based the Lahhentagge distillery. All local products can be found and purchased also under the Saaremaa EHTNE product label in the Kuressaare shop.

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