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Move the world together with us in a positive way

All KRASS team members contribute their knowledge and skills to one cause. Namely that of our vision. We maintain a friendly and appreciative cooperation. Take a look at the following pages and get to know our administrative und artistic team kennen!

Are you interested in joining the network and moving the world together with us in a positive sense? Many people, companies and institutions already support us in many ways. For example, our team is made up of volunteers, interns, members, artists and educators. This mix gives us a healthy degree of flexibility in our collaboration.

Administrative team

Claudia-SW

„We do not regard our sponsors, donors in material/financial terms and donors of time as financiers and donors, but rather as partners with whom we develop common goals, to whom we offer added value and whom we would like to invite to “change roles”.“

Claudia Seidensticker-Fountis, Founder & chairwoman, c.seidensticker@krass-ev.de

Anastasios Fountis

„I am committed to a society in which the creative potential of children and young people are encouraged and given space. In doing so, we want to combine profit-oriented and socially responsible entrepreneurship and thus create added value. We stand up for a society in which social values are lived and which is shaped by self-confident and self-determined people.“

Anastasios Fountis, Board & strategy, info@krass-ev.de

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„At first, I thought the idea behind KRASS was great and I really like Claudia!“

Carina Gonzalez, Marketing, Finance & Communications, c.gonzalez@krass-ev.de

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“Art and culture are treasures of our civilization. I support KRASS because these riches should be a part of all children’s lives.”

Dr. Hayat Wiersch, Head of Communications, h.wiersch@krass-ev.de

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„The fundamental concept of bringing culture, art and creativity in all its forms close to children and thus perhaps giving them undreamt-of perspectives, self-confidence and creative potential, has convinced us. “

Andreas Etzel, Art Director, a.etzel@hirnstrich.de

Stephanie Woitek

“I support KRASS, because sometimes even heroes need help.”

Stephanie Woitek, Web design, s.woitek@krass-ev.de

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„Cultural education, especially for children and young people, is the basis for a change in society. I would like to help young people express their wishes and gain self-confidence through artistic exploration. For this reason, I support KRASS.“

Salomon Derreza, Volunteer Coordinator, s.derreza@krass-ev.de

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„I like working at KRASS e.V. because we can carry out many great projects with the kids with a committed, creative team. The creativity that is unleashed supports the kids and makes them strong for their everyday lives.“

Melanie Oberreuther, Art, m.oberreuther@krass-ev.de

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„Today, there are so many families in our immediate neighborhood that need support. And children are always the weakest, whose prospects depend fundamentally on their environment and whose perspectives can be strongly influenced by meaningful offers. The direct local proximity of KRASS to the children and the enormous flexibility without aggravating bureaucracy form the motivation for our commitment. “

Inger Etzel, Marketing, i.etzel@krass-ev.de

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“I support KRASS because I think it is great and important that all children have access to culture and art. I am happy that I can contribute to this with my support.”

Dirk Meyer, IT

Jason Firchow Portrait

„Krass e.V. offers me the opportunity to realize myself and to convey my artistic skills to children and young people within the framework of cultural education and participation. In the last four years, I have been able to realize over 20 projects and provide hundreds of children and young people with free access to artistic activities.“

Jason Firchow, Chairman of the advisory board, j.firchow@krass-ev.de

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“Children are the future. These are not just words, this is the truth. I think it is very important that every child has the opportunity to receive an art education, regardless of where they come from. The children should have the feeling of being seen and appreciated. That’s why we go to the children who don’t get much attention. Every week, together with the children, I learn to value life, to enjoy the little things, and to realize the true power of art: To change the world.”

Ana Perez, a.perez@krass-ev.de

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I support KRASS because KRASS combines three important K’s. Children, art and culture (“Kinder, Kunst und Kultur”).

Ines Arnold, Communication, i.arnold@krass-ev.de

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“I support the KRASS e.V. because it gives all children and young people the opportunity for free art and culture, regardless of skin colour and religion.”

Marcel Albuera, Marketing, m.albuera@krass-ev.de

Jason Firchow Portrait

“Art and culture are treasures of our civilization. I support KRASS, because these riches should be a part of the life of all children.”

Lena Firchow, Social Media, l.firchow@krass-ev.de

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“I support KRASS because it enables children to realise themselves.”

Luca Hermann, Project assistant, l.hermann@krass-ev.de

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„I support KRASS e.V. because I find it enriching to support children in creative processes as well as on their educational path. As a member of the admin team, I can participate in the design and organization of important projects and, at the same time, as a volunteer in NaKu, I can experience first-hand how the children benefit from what KRASS e.V. has to offer.“

Adeline Mallmann, Social media, a.mallmann@krass-ev.de

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“Art promotes creativity, self-confidence and the imagination of children and young people. It also offers the opportunity to talk to each other on a whole new level. KRASS makes all this possible in the projects in an always appreciative way.”

Kim Reuscher, Project assistant & Fund raising, k.reuscher@krass-ev.de

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“To unconditionally give children the opportunity to express themselves creatively through art, to blossom, to have fun… a great vision that deserves all the attention and support it can get.”

Lukas Brenner, Google ad-grands & analytics

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„Cultural education, especially for children and young people, is the basis for a change in society. I would like to help young people express their wishes and gain self-confidence through artistic exploration. For this reason, I support KRASS.“

Fynn Marwede, intern, f.marwede@krass-ev.de

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Spread the word!

If you want to help us spread the idea of KRASS to the world, get in touch! We are always looking for people to help us spread the word about KRASS and reach more creatives and social organizations.

Artistic Team

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„The creative space enables children and adolescents to play spontaneously, unregulated and immersed in themselves, to experience forces, to open up potentials inside and outside, to act out fantasies and in relation to reality. As an art therapist at KRASS, I have been accompanying our participants in this process for over 4 years, by making this space experienceable together through considerate, protective letting-be with form, color, the means of art and the methods of art therapy. I am proud to be a part of the KRASS family and thus to be there especially for the children who desperately need this experience.

Melanie Schims, Art, info@krass-ev.de

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„As a filmmaker, I love working for Krass because Krass projects are always heart projects and there are no more beautiful camera images than happy children’s faces.“

Christian Feculak, Movie maker, info@krass-ev.de

Jason Firchow Portrait

„Krass e.V. offers me the opportunity to realize myself and to convey my artistic skills to children and young people within the framework of cultural education and participation. In the last four years, I have been able to realize over 20 projects and provide hundreds of children and young people with free access to artistic activities.“

Jason Firchow, Music and media, Chairman of the Advisory Board, j.firchow@krass-ev.de

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„It’s amazing what a handful of nails, a few meters of string and a wooden board can do. Coordination, concentration and an inner, almost meditative calm set in at the same time. The final broad and satisfied smile rounds off the “mutable”. Exactly this own experience I would like to pass on in my workshops. The effect is equally exciting for “small” or “big”, but especially the children, whom KRASS addresses, can give free rein to their creativity and fade out or process the heavy everyday life for a while. No more but also no less is my drive. A nice feeling!“

Catinka Ghiea, Art, info@krass-ev.de

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„I like working for KRASS because it is important to me that all children have access to education and culture. We achieve this through our great team and our good teamwork. At KRASS, I can contribute my own ideas and see how great children can develop with our support.

Katja Hübbers, Art and school education, k.huebbers@krass-ev.de

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„Developing creativity together connects and opens the mind and heart. I am always very fulfilled when children enthusiastically reach into the materials, try something out, discover, create and show and explain to others. Through art, self-confidence can be developed. Yes I can do something, I have created something! These are very nice moments for me when I see children’s eyes shine.“

Gabi Luigs, Art / Photography / Media, g.luigs@krass-ev.de

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„I like working at KRASS e.V. because we can carry out many great projects with the kids with a committed, creative team. The creativity that is unleashed supports the kids and makes them strong for their everyday lives.“

Melanie Oberreuther, Art, m.oberreuther@krass-ev.de

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„Why is art education for children & young people important for you personally? There is no right or wrong. Creativity opens doors, invites playful experimentation, creates decisiveness, self-esteem and concentration in a world that is distracting, overwhelmed and scheduled.“

Barbara Rückert, Art, b.rueckert@krass-ev.de

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I am at KRASS to develop and implement artistic, child-rich projects. Here I may and was allowed to work with many people in an inspiring way. I am allowed to fully develop my creative drive and wealth of ideas.

Mareike van Elsbergen, Visual arts and art therapy, info@krass-ev.de

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Spread the word!

If you want to help us spread the idea of KRASS to the world, get in touch! We are always looking for people to help us spread the word about KRASS and reach more creatives and social organizations.

Artistic team movies

This clips are part of the video series #WeAreKrass (#WirSindKrass). With this series we offer a glimpse into the world of KRASS and the work of our artistic leaders, while at the same time providing insight into the contributions which nurture the KRASS success of our association.

In the categories of Dance, Fine Art, Music and Theater KRASS e.V. has implemented an abundance of projects over the last 10 years, affording free access to cultural education for all children and youth.

We thank our artistic leaders, who use their profession every day to shape the KRASS vision and carry it into the world. You guys are brilliant!

Ana Perez

“Art is magic, freed from the lie of being truth” T.W. Adorno.

Ana was a philosopher before becoming an artist, which perhaps distinguishes her way of making art from the other. The concept comes before the technique and the technique is directly wounded with the art project. That’s why she works with photography and video as well as art book, installation and performance. After her Master’s degree in “Art, Culture and Literature for Children and Adolescents”, Ana started in 2011 with a program for Spanish libraries and schools, which consisted of a mixture of pedagogy, philosophy and art.

Currently, she also works as an integration aide with children who have an impairment and continues her artistic work in her free time at KRASS. The Artmobile is without a doubt, the most beautiful project she has worked on. The freedom the project gives the children to develop their creativity is something she couldn’t find anywhere before. The KuMo comes where the children who need it most are, and every week Ana discovers with the children the magic that art brings. By the way, the art bags that were distributed in the clip come from our sponsor, the Kinderträume Foundation! Thank you for that!

This clip is part of our video series #WirSindKrass. With this series we want to give you an insight into our KRASSe world and the work of our artistic directors and at the same time show you what the success of our association is based on. For the past ten years, KRASS e.V. has been implementing numerous projects in the areas of dance, visual arts, music and theater, enabling all children and young people to access cultural education free of charge.

We would like to thank our artistic directors who, with their commitment, help to shape our vision every day and carry it into the world. You are great!

Camera/Editing: Christian Feculak

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Elina Zaitseva

Today we introduce you our artist Elina from Odessa, but listen for yourself what Lena translated 😘  “My superpower is optimism”

Elina comes from Odessa, a city in Ukraine. Due to the war in her home country, she had to leave it. Previously, she created her own artwork there, among other things, and has now been supporting KRASS since June 2022 with her positive, open and infectious nature. Through her expertise and warm personality, she supports children who have fled their home country, helping them to process their suppressed emotions through art, but also to create new positive emotions through art. She also encourages the talents of the little ones and gets the maximum of artistic potential out of them. With these clips from the #WirSindKrass video series, we want to give you an insight into our world and the work of our artistic directors and at the same time show you what the success of our association is based on.

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Mareike van Elsbergen

The certified Art therapy graduate, trained occupational therapist and accredited social pedagogue, Mareike von Elbergen, is so multi-faceted and inquisitive in the field of applied art therapy, that one is unable to pin down her work with one concept. She works primarily with the elderly, the disabled, and above all, with children.

In her creative workshops and projects in schools and kindergartens, she accepts the children as they are in the moment of her encounter with them. This is how it functions best in a refugee center, but also in many other projects, in which things revolve around strengthening and also very consciously defining children’s personalities and special attributes.

“KRASS means simply to be their” – to be their as a mirror that emphasizes strengths and understands things that elsewhere are considered as “weaknesses or deficiencies”, as neutral or even as hidden ability and strength. Personalities must be supported and strengthened – especially if children do not communicate very much with language – and for Mareike there are ways, particularly through observation, to get ideas as to what extent her students can be involved. “From every spot one can make something with creativity!” – this one can understand as the foundation of Mareikes attitude towards life, and as that which she teaches children to give them courage.

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Jason Firchow

Jason Firchow has all that one requires to win over and motivate young people.

Namely: Coolness and enthusiasm for what he does!

Along with this he is highly skilled at leading youth projects in the areas of Hip Hop, Rap, Graffiti and so much more. Through to the present he has years of freelance experience in Media conception and production, and he has lead music education projects at institutions such as the Youth Theater and the NRW Dance Company.

Jason believes in the value of this work, and through it he seeks to create with others something new and exciting!

With his easy-going nature and empathy he produces a terrific, professional and productive atmosphere, in which young people can discover and explore their talents. Jason is actively involved in the living environment of many youth, he speaks their language and knows how one opens perspectives. He himself turned his hobby into a career.

KRASS is excited, Jason is excited and so are the youngsters! It doesn’t get better than this!

But it’s best to hear for oneself, what Jason has to say about it:

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Barbara Rückert

Barbara Rückert studied stage design and free art at the art academy of Düsseldorf, and up to the present she is self-employed as a stage and costume designer. She collected her many years of experience in over 38 theatres and opera houses in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Since 2014 she has also supported KRASS e.V. with her wonderful and always new project ideas. In the large theatres she particularly learned a lot about associating with people. Places where you are involved every day with a variety of people – from the diva to the workers and guests who “remain on the floor” – who could not be more diverse. This is particularly helpful to her in relation to the children and adolescents from the KRASS projects; because here also the diversity of the participants could not be more colourful and varied. Wether it has to do with simply providing them with a tool for self-realization, or taking them a step forward through empowerment and as as a stimulant to motivate them, she finds the right path through her perceptiveness and discipline. Thereby she cultivates a culture of respectful, open and honest communication, which is very well received by the children and adolescents.

In this video you will see an excerpt from the 3rd iteration of the project “Anders”, that she leads together with Jason Firchow. A Wonderful project!

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Melanie Warnstaedt

“I just like working with people and children and in my photo studio ‘Kleine Rückblicke’ (little flashbacks) in Moers I can realize this. In my life there was never only one path or direction and to date aside my work as a freelance photographer social engagements are an integral part of my life which is mainly one thing- happiness.”

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Marcel Uhl

Marcel Uhl’s project work with children and young people teaches “being crazy”, as he puts it. And that is meant in a positive sense, of course! His practice-oriented youth work is primarily about promoting self-motivation.

Within the individual, sometimes complex projects, the children and young people choose their tasks independently. This happens out of curiosity, inclination and/or abilities, but always with joy. The difference to regular learning in school and everyday life is clearly the freedom to decide for oneself which tasks to dedicate oneself to.

Having fun is then also the decisive driving factor. It allows the participants to experience large or small visible successes relatively quickly.

Working in itself offers many starting points for working with children and young people to positively influence independence and motivation to learn. The work is always result-oriented and requires the precise planning of individual work steps. Each of these steps is documented by the child’s own handicraft product.

In addition, the projects should always be related to and useful in everyday life: for example, drawers and even real football goals. Learning and what is learned thus acquire a tangible meaning for the children and young people and are correspondingly more appreciated than may happen with learning content of a more abstract form.

The young participants receive permanent feedback in the joint feedback rounds. The main focus here is on positive reinforcement. Everyone’s strengths and abilities are openly discussed in the round. Confidence in one’s own concrete abilities thus grows continuously.

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Moussa Dialo (Sapali Düsseldorf)

The Senegalese, Moussa Diallo, has lived in Germany for 7 years, and among other things works for the NRW Dance House, and the Academy of Cultural Education in Remscheid. In addition, he teaches Djembe drum courses at Duesseldorf primary schools, kindergartens and also for adults. Additionally, he offers ongoing courses in the context of NRW state programs for culture and schools, such as school-holiday workshops.

He grew up with West African rhythm and drum techniques, and until 2009 he toured around the world as a professional percussionist for the group “Djembe Rythme Guediwaye. In spain he founded the drum and dance group “Sapali Percussion,” thereby realizing numerous engagements and appearances.

His motto is “always be happy and grateful!” Not at all simple in a land where the people often suffer under stress and performance pressure. Moussa integrates his positive experiences into his pedagogic work with children and youth: stressed parents often indirectly take their own agitation out on their children – this becomes problematic in school, where sitting quietly and concentrating is rewarded, instead of counteracting their agitation via movement. “Drumming makes happy!” In his courses and workshops he passes this joy onto the children and is grateful for the time he can spend with them.

They often begin in a restrained manner, so that at least by the end, when drumming and singing are combined, all are joining in “loud and with taste!” After every drumming session he is exhausted and the kids are happy. In particular, he appreciates that children in financially weaker circumstances can participate and get free support through KRASS. It is evident that the children have fun, and he also especially likes to introduce them to his culture and the background of the songs.

Above all, respect for ones family and parents plays a large roll – the children also indirectly learn from him how they can confront problems with their parents differently than they did previously. Drumming is an outlet and at the same time generates satisfaction and community among the children. Drumming for inner stability and as a learning space for conflict resolution.

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Jenny Trautwein

Painting and sculpting as a trustworthy level of communication: without question, in themselves these are already creative and beautiful activities.

But in this video Jenny Trautwein very clearly describes to what extent art can also become a safe space; a space in which one can relax, trust and be calm – maybe to assimilate a beautiful experience, but perhaps also to express problems or sorrow where one otherwise only finds difficult words.

Jenny, accredited in painting restoration, studied at the school of fine arts in Dresden. Currently she is self employed and is also the workshop leader at Ars Servandi in Duesseldorf. As the daughter of an artist she grew up with the smell of paint, and loves doing collaborative work with children.

Thus, through her involvement with KRASS she is also doing something that lies close to her heart. Jenny is a very empathetic, energetic and creative person, whose nature imparts both stability and esteem.
Through her understanding of art as a form of self protection, Jenny is able to negotiate the balancing act between maintaining a professional, emotional distance from the problems and fates of her participants, and practicing authentic sympathy at eye level.

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Aischa Sabbouh-Eggert

For many adults, to create by hand something of ones own or something new, remains a dream, a horror, or maybe a thing that is “not possible”.

But if one observes crafting, sculpting, and painting children when they create their own, unique artworks with devotion, concentration and boundless creativity, then one foresees what Aischa Sabbouh-Eggert activates with her KRASS sewing workshops.

The accredited fine artist herself gladly works with needle and thread, and in addition she completed a tailoring apprenticeship under Toni Gard in Duesseldorf.

For most children, sewing is a totally new experience, and making a doll, for example, with a piece of material, a needle and a thread reveals a lot to them outside of their normal opportunities.

How big then is the surprise and pride in the personal achievement, when, through loving guidance, piece by piece, one accomplishes ones own little artwork.With children, this is often what results when Aischa emboldens them, and teaches them the art of Textile design. Furthermore, children often make something that not only delights them during the process of creation, but also long thereafter, because they can take their little masterworks home with them to have, hold and love.

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Amaia Arieta

Music can effect us in so many ways. It can make us sad, cheerful, happy and thoughtful, or all of these at once, regardless of our language, culture, age and gender.
“Music is the best medicine” says Amaia Arieta with assurance. And Amaia, a committed young Spaniard, has already achieved much with her love of music. Over the past 5 years she has taught and involved herself with children through a variety of social projects.

Currently she is studying music education at the music conservatory in Düsseldorf. There she also finds time for children, who are so dear to her heart.

Every week she plays music with the children at the Düsseldorfer Children’s Clinic, as part of the project “making music in the hospital.”

With her rolling trunk full of musical surprises, her temperament, empathy and good humour, Amaia offers children a chance to escape hospital life for a short time, and bonds with them in a positive way.
She gives the gift of joy, and joy is “life courage”! How it all looks can bee seen in this video, containing many beautiful pictures and impressions.

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Illiana Bouloutsou

Illiana Bouloutsou is a Hip-Hop dancer with heart and soul. Dancing – for Illiana it is a passion, through which the body and soul become one. This vigour and passion is a part of the KRASS Project for children and youth, Hip Hop Workshop. Because people like Illiana are ready to share their power, and to motivate others, awesome projects for children like this may be set on their feet for the first time.

Here the children and youth can forget about their everyday worries, become empowered, find new friends, and celebrate collective success. It is outstanding anti-agression training, which supports the development and trengthening of healthy self-confidence. This engagement of people for people is endlessly valuable, because here something collective is carried out in a fun way.

The children and youth learn to trust one another, concentrate and work independently, and live out their creativity.

In the following video Illiana Bouloutsou personally explains why she believes in the KRASS vision, how this activity makes a difference, and what she wants to activate through her work.

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Anja Sonneson

Children and youth have an unbelievable capacity to be enthusiastic. This is clearly evident in the multi-faceted art projects of Anja Sonneson.
To try something new, play with colors, forms and materials, and create something unique and personal, provides empowerment, strengthens one’s self-confidence and awareness of personal ability, while also supporting creativity and openness.

“In fine art their is no right or wrong,” says Anja Sonneson.

The fine artist has worked with KRASS e.V. for years. “Once one becomes free of that which has been learned, one’s creativity and self-confidence grows”, she explains.

With much humour and empathy Anja opens new horizons for the children, and they are able to joyfully create far from the constraints of their daily lives. Through art they learn to communicate.

One also immediately notices Anja’s own enthusiasm for her valuable work. In the following video, the artistic leader Anja Sonneson personally explains to viewers why she believes in the KRASS vision, und what she wants to activate with her work:

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