“To whom it may concern,
You live in Berlin or come here whenever you have an extra dime or some free time. You can’t think of a better place even though you sometimes get the feeling that ‘it was better before’….”
This was the introduction of the 2012 Facebook post by Annamaria that sparked the community movement, which later became Give Something Back to Berlin (GSBTB). Annamaria Olsson had moved to Berlin from Sweden to study and work as a journalist. As a migrant in Germany, she observed the rise of nationalism, xenophobia, and populist discourse in Europe. Inspired by a handful of positive and solution-oriented grassroots initiatives that addressed various migration challenges, Annamaria believed that migrants and refugees can actively develop and appy inclusive approaches to social integration process.
The 2012 social media post went viral. It mobilised so many people who wanted to do something for the city and the community they live in. Give Something Back to Berlin grew into a collective brainchild of countless great minds and officially registered as an association in 2013. Since then, GSBTB has made thousands of newcomers active contributors to Berlin’s social and cultural life, creating strong networks for participation and inclusion.