Olivia Feldman, a senior International Studies and Art History major with minors in German Studies and Classical Studies, will work for a service organization in Berlin for one year starting this September.
The organization, known as Aktion Sühnezeichen Friedensdienste, is a program founded by the Protestant Church in Germany in 1958 in the belief that young Germans and young citizens of the countries harmed by Germany’s actions in World War II could achieve reconciliation through service projects.
Volunteers are placed at nonprofits that focus on supporting human rights and anti-racism initiatives, as well as at Holocaust memorial sites or former concentration camps. Volunteers typically complete supplementary work with the disabled or with elderly members of the local Jewish community.
Olivia will work at the ASF headquarters in the Mitte district of Berlin, where she will help coordinate the program’s 34 summer camps in 16 countries. These summer camps allow people from all over the world to volunteer for two weeks in a variety of service areas, which can include work in Jewish communities, refurbishing Jewish cemeteries, working at memorial sites, social services with the disabled and elderly, and working on remembrance projects commemorating victims of the Holocaust. Olivia will also commit one day per week to support the elderly members of Berlin’s Jewish community.
Olivia’s position is an unpaid volunteer position; ASF pays travel, housing, and a monthly stipend.