When the corks popped at midnight on New Year's Eve 2016 in Berlin, the decision was made. "We don't want to stay here any longer," Martina and Alexander Koch said to themselves. At the time, she was working as a knowledge manager at Zalando, he in international sales at Liebherr. But the hustle and bustle in Berlin, the long journeys, all that with a small child - neither of them wanted that for another year. So a little later they packed their bags and decided on a region where they had never lived before: the Münsterland. Their new home: Senden.
If you read the Kochs' CVs, one thing jumps right out at you: they both love internationality, new cultures, discovering the world. The Viennese and the German-born Koch (who grew up in Italy, by the way) met during their Erasmus semester in the Netherlands, later they went to Switzerland and Algeria together and lived there for several years. After a stopover in Vienna, they moved to Berlin and finally to Münsterland in 2017.
Why send it now? The couple can think of several reasons. The first: "The exciting business location," says Martina directly. "Münsterland is very solution- and future-oriented," they both think. "With a hands-on mentality, things are done directly here, not so much philosophising." That's what they like. Both have started their own business here, Martina works as a knowledge manager, Alexander as a systemic business coach and intercultural coach. Even before the move, the 44-year-old had come to know and appreciate the strong and diverse medium-sized businesses in Münsterland through his former job, and he also liked the proximity to the Ruhr region, his former home.
Martina was also able to gain a direct professional foothold in the region. The proximity to the university city of Münster is also important to the 37-year-old. "Especially because of the focus on education there," says the knowledge manager. In addition, she joined various networks, became the managing director of the Münsterland Educational Institute and is also active as a volunteer on the board of the Pinocchio daycare centre. "I never get bored," she says and smiles. That is also true for Alexander.
Their two children together were and are another reason why they chose Senden. We got a day-care place here straight away," they say, adding that the municipality personally supported them from the very beginning. The garden of their house in Senden borders directly on a forest, there are many playgrounds, the canal is not far away, and it takes less than an hour to reach the Dutch border. A visit to Alexander's family in Oberhausen can also be arranged quickly. "And when we have guests, we always have something new in the region to show them."
And one reason is still missing that made their arrival in Münsterland as pleasant as possible: the people. "They are actually everything the stereotype doesn't say," Martina finds and laughs. "Open, curious, interested." "And honest and value-oriented," adds her husband. So not only they but also their two children quickly made contacts.
What other word comes to mind about the Münsterland? The Kochs laugh: "Flat," is Martina's direct association. After all, she was born in Vienna and makes no secret of it: she misses the mountains there, the snow, the skiing. Even a visit to the Sauerland can't compensate for that. "At least we always have Almdudler and Mannerschnitten at home," says the 37-year-old with a grin. And quite apart from the lack of mountains, she and her husband have long felt at home in Senden, as they say: "For us, home is where the family is.
Many people have come back to Münsterland and are more than happy with their decision. Read through more portraits of people who have chosen this region as their new home and tell us what appeals to them about Münsterland.