How to find the right volunteering opportunity in Berlin

You’ve done it. Seriously; you’ve got this. What started as a spontaneous move to the German capital is now a full-on stable kind of thing. You’ve got a job you like, (weird) friends to hang out and your flat is not half-bad. For some of us however, there is this little hole inside that is very hard to fill. A certain sense of un-resolution. That feeling has been there for a while but it’s only now that it strikes you.

Thinking about oneself is only so good for a time. What about others?

“Now that i have it good, i can certainly help others. I can give back with a bit of time and energy. I just need the right cause.” I have had that little conversation with myself for a while now, so it led me to think how i could volunteer in Berlin. I thought that this quest could be relevant to others as well. So here it goes.

volunteer Berlin

Wait a minute; why should I volunteer in Berlin?

Volunteering comes in many forms, such as afterschool homework help, cleaning a park, or assisting refugees with integration, to name a few. It’s a way to give back to your community and support those less fortunate, while being the change you want to see happen. Not only that, but you’ll meet new people from all walks of life. A lot of expats and migrants get stuck in their expat bubble, struggling to make local connections. But if you volunteer Berlin might feel less like a giant metropolis and more like a welcoming home.

Get ouf of your comfort zone, meet new people and strengthen your soft-skills

Next to the social and charitable aspect, volunteering also helps you develop soft-skills that can make a difference in your personal and professional life. Does your CV need some more evidence of teamwork skills? Many projects require a group of strangers to work closely together, providing experience in team-building and multicultural communication.

There are many ways you can help depending on your interests, skills, resources, and what you want to achieve. You can:

  • Turn your passions into workshops, teaching, activities and community events.
  • Be the political or societal change in your community with local and national activism.
  • Exchange your desk job for hands-on work outdoors, even if just for a few hours.
  • Take a break from stressful clients and provide your professional services pro bono for non-profits and volunteer organizations.

These are all great reasons to find a volunteer opportunity in Berlin.

How can i find the cause that fits me?

Whether you’re a volunteer Berlin student, professional or concerned community member, your assistance is welcome. Some activities need specific skills, while others just need helpful hands. There are shortages for volunteers all around the city throughout the year, so your help is always appreciated.

Even if you only have a few hours on the weekend or once a month, you can always find some opportunity for volunteering in Berlin:

  • Vostel: Whether you’re looking to volunteer, need helpers or want to organize something for your company, this platform can help. With the “Vostel-O-Mat” you can sort through activities by location, timeframe and level of German language skills. Choose from twenty different types of causes, such as work with seniors and children, or IT and finance support.
  • Give Something Back to Berlin: This award-winning platform for volunteering in Berlin connects locals, migrants and refugees through meaningful projects, such as free and open music, food, language, art, yoga and more!
  • Youvo: Are you a creative person? Many non-profit organizations are looking for pro bono assistance with video, photo, writing, design and digital projects. These skills are vital for putting social initiatives on the map, spreading the word and helping their causes succeed.
  • Gute Tat: This German platform connects Berlin volunteers to hundreds of small and large projects for social engagement. Choose your interests and location to find a list of organizations in need of your assistance.
  • Tbd*: Otherwise known as “The Changer”, this community is focused on supporting individuals and organizations that are changing the world.
  • GoVolunteer: This platform aims to motivate social engagement and bring together locals and newcomers to actively build communities. You can sort the list of initiatives by your city, skillset, topic, availability and languages to find a good match to your interests.

If you are looking after some IRL vibes, you can also attend one of the annual volunteering events. They bring people together for a few focused days of volunteer work and offer information on ways to help the community.

It doesn’t matter which event, activity or organization draws your attention, what matters is your willingness to put in some time and effort to help others. Every volunteer Berlin gets is a win for the city!

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

2 last things about the “when” in your volunteering experience: start small and take it from there. Don’t pressure yourself into complying to an opportunity if you don’t really have the time. Life gets in the way, we all get it. Also; believe it or not, the Christmas season is usually the best season for charities/causes because everybody wants to volunteer when the Christmas spirit is there. The rest of the year is a lot more difficult then. Keep that in mind and happy volunteering in Berlin!


  • Reply Amelia 17/11/2020 at 18:03

    Hello! I am a tourist in Berlin, and will be staying until February 2021. I was wondering, is it possible to volunteer as a tourist or would I be required to have a work visa/permanent place of residence to volunteer? Thanks! Amelia

    • Reply Bastien - Settle in Berlin 20/11/2020 at 09:45

      Hey Amelia. Since it’s a voluntary job, i don’t see anything against it. Make sure to clear this with the association you are going to work with. There might be other implications like insurance or something like that.

  • Reply Sara Nasr 16/10/2020 at 15:17


    I am Sara, 31y.o, I am an Architect and work 5 days of the weekdays, would like to do something effective and helpful to change my life and maybe some others too… I can speak Persian, English and German.
    I don’t know whom exactly should I contact to.
    I look forward for your answer.
    Thank you.

    Best regards,
    Sara Nasr

    • Reply Bastien - Settle in Berlin 16/10/2020 at 15:57

      Hey Sara. This exactly what those platforms are for. Just browse, pick and they will take your hand each step of the process. : )

    • Reply Lizzie 26/10/2020 at 08:26

      Hi Sara, if you might be interested in volunteering in an asylum accommodation in Lichtenberg write to me, we can see if there is anything that works with your interests and schedule. [email protected]

  • Reply MD Zahidul Islam 20/08/2020 at 21:53

    Hi good morning. Have as good day. i would like to volunteer work in berlin. I have five days office. The rest of two days want to service for the helpless people. I have working experience in Asia and African countries. Any organization please esponse me.

    zahidul I
    [email protected]

  • Reply Miguel B 07/06/2020 at 23:37

    Hello my name is Miguel. I am from Venezuela. I am 25 years old, medical doctor willing to be a volunteer in Berlin to live new experiences, helping others and learning from it. I love cultural exchanges and I really wish to be part of it some day!

  • Reply Suleman 25/03/2020 at 18:55

    Hello I am living in Berlin how I can help in this situation as a volunteer ?

    • Reply Bastien - Settle in Berlin 29/03/2020 at 20:58

      I suppose: stay home for now. 🙂

  • Reply DAISY HAMUKUWA 04/03/2020 at 07:58


  • Reply Akane 01/02/2020 at 06:28

    Hi, I’m 23 and studying World Heritage studies. I’m going to study in Cottbus from September 2020 for one year and I’d like to volunteer while I stay. I think I’d like to join volunteering once a week. May anyone can help to find the place or community suitable for me?
    I’d like to work for relating something heritage or sightseeing or culture.

  • Reply ARNOLD URASSA 14/01/2020 at 21:16

    Hello am ANOLD URASSA i come from TANZANIA . but i want to come in GERMANY like volunteer for one year ,
    I want to lerning more about language especially DEUTSCH.

  • Reply Mamusu Conteh-Jones 26/12/2019 at 23:09

    How can I become a Volunteer in Berlin?

  • Reply Awelker 21/10/2019 at 06:28

    Iam 22 yers old can you help me to find awork in berlin for helping my poor family i live in Ethiopia UNHCR

    • Reply Bastien - Settle in Berlin 21/10/2019 at 21:55

      Hey Awelker. I cannot help you find a job in Berlin, i’m sorry. I’m not immigrant or refugee consultant, just a guy with a blog.

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