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Volkswagen employee Ines Doberanzke-Milnikel is awarded Federal Cross of Merit for Memorial Site work

  • German president presents Cross of Merit at Schloss Bellevue
  • Decoration honors Doberanzke-Milnikel’s personal commitment and the social responsibility of Volkswagen in connection with Memorial Site work at Auschwitz  
The native of Magdeburg coordinates Memorial Site Work as well as international exchange and encounter programs with apprentices and managers for the Volkswagen Group .

Ines Doberanzke-Milnikel (47) an employee of the Volkswagen Group from Beendorf (Börde District, Saxony-Anhalt), was today presented with the Federal Cross of Merit by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Berlin. Doberanzke-Milnikel , who holds degrees in social work and social management, was honored at Schloss Bellevue for her volunteering commitment with the Association of Friends of the International Youth Meeting Center Oświęcim/Auschwitz as well as her professional and social commitment with Volkswagen.

The native of Magdeburg coordinates international exchange and encounter programs as well as Memorial Site work at Auschwitz with apprentices and managers for the Volkswagen Group.

Doberanzke-Milnikel founded the Association for the Youth Meeting Center in 2013 in order to provide support for youth groups from Germany, Poland and Eastern Europe on visits to Auschwitz Concentration Camp Memorial Site.

The citation issued by the Office of the Federal German President concludes: “Her work bears witness to her own personal commitment and the social responsibility of German companies.”  

Doberanzke-Milnikel founded the Association for the Youth Meeting Center in 2013.

Following the award ceremony, Ines Doberanzke-Milnikel said: “I’m very happy today. I have received this honor on behalf of all the apprentices and my colleagues who have been involved in Memorial Site work and international encounters and stand up for respect, tolerance and cosmopolitanism – within the Volkswagen Group, on the International Auschwitz Committee and at the International Youth Meeting Center.

The award of the Federal Cross of Merit on International Volunteers’ Day took place under the motto of “The future needs remembrance”. The German head of state honored the outstanding commitment of 14 women and 14 men to the culture of remembrance in Germany. Those honored stood up for the remembrance of injustice and dictatorship as well as for the remembrance of Germany’s history of freedom and democracy. The recipients come from all German federal states as well as from France and the Czech Republic.

Association of Friends of the International Youth Meeting Center
The association, with headquarters in Berlin, fosters activities that promote international understanding, especially projects for coming to terms with recent history for young people from Poland and Germany. The main focus is on the history of Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and extermination camp, the history of the Second World War and contemporary history. The projects are supported by Oświęcim/Auschwitz International Youth Meeting Center.

Memorial Site work at Auschwitz and international youth meetings at Oświęcim (Poland) - A joint project of the International Auschwitz Committee and the Volkswagen Group
Work on the Memorial Site and the youth meetings in Oświęcim / Auschwitz are a joint project of Volkswagen and the International Auschwitz Committee (IAC), initiated by the Works Council and supported by the company. The initiative started in December 1987 with a seminar for apprentices from Wolfsburg in Auschwitz. Over the past 30 years, 3,218 young Germans and Poles, vocational school students from Poland and apprentices from the Volkswagen Group have taken part in youth meetings in Poland. Together, the young women and men from the two countries help to preserve the Auschwitz Memorial Site. They clear weeds from pathways, repair barbed wire fences, preserve the shoes of the victims and talk to eyewitnesses who survived Auschwitz.