USA and Germany
Having grown up in the U.S.A. as the daughter of German immigrants, Silke started her NGO career straight out of Brandeis University with a BA in Politics with the Lawyers Alliance for Nuclear Arms Control.
After re-migrating back to Germany she studied Law at the Freie Universität in Berlin and then moved to the Netherlands where she raised her two children while working with refugees and migrant women. There she helped bring the Stolpersteine Project to the Netherlands and researched the biographies of the 280 Jewish Holocaust victims of Eindhoven, resulting in the book “Ze waren onze buren” (They were our Neighbors).
Back in Berlin since 2014, she has been involved with GSBTB since 2015, teaching English as a volunteer. She works as a project manager for the NGO Sozialhelden, a disability rights organization in Berlin.
Annamaria Olsson is a Swedish activist, social entrepreneur and writer who has been living in Berlin since 2008.
Annamaria completed a degree in the History of Ideas and Gender, Middle Eastern and Holocaust Studies at Humboldt and Uppsala University. In 2012, she started working on the idea for Give Something Back To Berlin, which was officially founded and established in 2013.
Prior to founding GSBTB, she has over 10 years of NGO experience from Sweden, where she was Director at SECO, one of the biggest Swedish NGOs. She has also worked as a freelance correspondent from Berlin, Germany and Brazil, writing for well-known Swedish magazines and newspapers; in 2014, she published her first book.
Besides working with GSBTB, Annamaria is on a scholarship writing a creative non-fiction book about people whose destinies have been shaped by borders, exile and migration, aiming to interweave the history of Germany and Berlin with currents event, including migration from the Middle East (and beyond), demonstrating interesting similarities and historical overlap. Her short stories have been published in both Swedish and English publications.
Nikolaus Kohl is originally from Saarland, where he grew up seeing both the French and Luxembourg border from his window.
After completing his businesses and engineering studies in Munich, Nikolaus came to Berlin to found a company developing cooling systems for computers.
He got involved with GSBTB in 2014, supporting its refugee projects in the self-organized refugee rights movement squats on Oranienplatz and Ohlauerstrasse. Since then, he has been a key figure in building up Give Something Back To Berlin. Besides founding his own business, he is also involved in his family firm which is based in Saarland. He has been in the GSBTB Vorstand since 2016.