Team of the month: August


Burda has the best teams working together to achieve great things. In our "Team of the Month" series, we present such departments on the intranet. The foundation is a subsidiary of the Berlin-based social enterprise Good Hood GmbH, which operates the neighbourhood platform and is majority-owned by Burda.

The foundation promotes volunteer work in neighbourhoods and society and supports a solidary and vibrant togetherness. To what extent can this spirit be found in your team?

Our core team now consists of eight dedicated women. We all come from different backgrounds and are happy to be able to contribute in our daily work to transforming neighbourhoods into places where people can meet, support each other and realise common visions. This spirit is also reflected in our team: many of our employees volunteer outside the Foundation, for example at the Special Olympics World Games 2023 in Berlin, at the football club or at a drop-in centre for women in distress. As part of our Climate Protection Next Door ideas competition, we also worked together as a team: in June 2023, we collected rubbish with the Litterpickers (theme winner of the German Neighbourhood Award 2022) from Berlin. It is important to us to stay in contact with the award winners beyond the project period and to support their commitment in a long-term and sustainable way.

In 2022, the foundation launched a project called "Climate Protection Next Door", which will for the first time search for and award ideas for climate protection in neighbourhoods throughout Germany. What is the motto for 2023?

In 2023, the motto of "Klimaschutz nebenan" will be: Think globally, act locally. With the ideas competition, we want to encourage people to develop and implement creative and practical ideas for climate protection in their own neighbourhoods. After all, every small step is important if we as a society are to tackle the urgent challenges of climate change together and shape a sustainable future. Whether it's collecting rubbish, recycling materials, greening the street or saving energy - from March to June, anyone can submit ideas for a climate-friendly neighbourhood. An online vote will decide which idea will go forward. Until 25 August, everyone can vote for their favourite idea at The 20 ideas with the most votes will win up to €3,000 in seed money.

What exactly does the team do?

We promote concrete, voluntary involvement in neighbourhoods and society. In this way, we help to combat loneliness and social division and promote a humane, supportive and vibrant community. The German Neighbourhood Award honours committed neighbourhood initiatives: We honour the commitment, make the projects better known, and thus encourage others to follow suit. With the Day of the Neighbour, we are calling on people to organise small and large neighbourhood celebrations to get together in a simple, low-threshold way with people they would otherwise only meet in passing in the corridor or on the street - on one day throughout the country. The Climate Protection Next Door competition is looking for the best ideas to promote climate protection in your own neighbourhood. What's special about it is that the ideas submitted don't have to be implemented yet, but we support them with start-up capital for their initial implementation.

What has been the biggest success so far?

In the six years of the foundation so far, we have awarded the German Neighbourhood Award to over 100 projects and celebrated over 5,000 neighbourhood festivals on the annual Neighbourhood Day. We have received over 1000 ideas for making neighbourhoods greener and more climate-friendly in our Climate Protection in Your Neighbourhood competition. We are proud to be able to support initiatives directly and concretely with our projects and thus make many small contributions to the big picture: sustainable, liveable neighbourhoods where everyone feels at home.

What was the biggest challenge your team faced? 

Like so many people over the past three years, it has been a challenge for us to deal with the restrictions and changes brought about by the Corona pandemic. In a very short space of time, we had to adapt our projects on the fly. Looking back, we are proud that even under pandemic conditions, we were able to bring neighbours together through postcards or neighbourhood meetings in small groups. In this way, community and togetherness were experienced despite the pandemic. At the German Neighbourhood Award 2020 and 2021, we were able to give the many important spontaneous aid initiatives the attention and publicity they deserved. The Corona crisis made us all aware of the importance of neighbourly cooperation, personal contacts and mutual support, especially in a hyper-local context.

Division in the team: Who is responsible for what?

  • Katharina Roth: Management
  • Nathalie Rajevic: Project Manager German Neighbourhood Award
  • Julia Thimm: Project Manager Climate Protection Next Door
  • Lena Witkowski: Project Manager Neighbours' Day
  • Aleksandra Bednarska: Finance
  • Neomi Klingenberg: Project Manager German Neighbourhood Award and Day of the Neighbour
  • Janine Töpel: Project Manager Climate Protection Next Door
  • Ricarda Zahn: Communications & PR
  • Rosanna Steyer: Communications & PR
  • Marion Beauchet: Social Media
  • Evelina Lohschelder: Newsletter
  • Dominic Feldt: Internship
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