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SIAE Awards 2006
Štefan Gorše from Novo mesto

SIAE awards for learning and knowledge promotion 2010

Awards to individuals for outstanding achievements in lifelong learning 

Alojz Lipnik from Solčava

Nominated by: Jože Prah



In 2009, Solčava received the prestigious European Commission EDEN award - European Destination of Excellence. Much of the credit goes to Alojz Lipnik, forester, patriot and mayor of the Municipality of Solčava. He uses his training as a study circle mentor and the other informal knowledge with which he continually builds on his formal education to bring together people in the municipality. He makes a particular contribution to understanding of and respect for the principles of sustainable development.

The father of four has been connected to nature all his life. Of himself, he says "My work, realised in numerous projects, began with my education to become a study-circle mentor." He persuaded scattered mountain farmers to get involved in study circles, enthusing them so much that their participation developed into a society. He's always an active participant in workshops and seminars, as well as a leader, moderator and lecturer. He designed and led several successful domestic and international projects, such as Solčava Mountain Timber, Solčava Tourism Infrastructure, Delta - Traffic Solutions in Tourist Areas, Nature Experience, Old and New Rinka etc.

Armed with the new knowledge acquired in study circles, Alojz also discharges his mayoral duties. He knows what dialogue means. He knows how to listen and find the strengths of every resident or colleague. His development plans ascribe great importance to lifelong learning. Solčava mountain farms designed their original tourism offer in study circles. Another fruit of study-circle labours is the Solčava panoramic road linking the farms. In truth the development vision of Alojz Lipnik is challenging and long-term in nature. Concern for young people has a special place, so he is already preparing a municipal business incubator and incentives for young families, as he recognises that without them there is no future.

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