How a PR event turned into a good afternoon


Natascha Ochsenknecht serves pizza to John (front) and Niko.  Arkas manager Jeanette Borchert says thank you.
Natascha Ochsenknecht serves pizza to John (front) and Niko. Arkas manager Jeanette Borchert says thank you. Volkmar Otto

Now you could write one of those articles that are often read at Christmas. Celebrities and representatives of companies like to move out and visit social projects. They hand over the offerings and are photographed. Then they say how important it is to donate. Thank you to the gift recipients. It’s good for the poor and maybe a little better for celebrities and businesses. After a good hour, everyday life returns.

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Looking around the venue in the Brienzer Strasse Arch, Weddings, on this Tuesday afternoon, you can see more adults than children. It’s different here about children, in everyday life. Today, only Niko and Jonas are sitting at the long, beautifully decorated table, they were the only ones who dared to come to the press event. Others are either sick, at other Christmas parties, some just aren’t feeling the media hype. Children can sense exactly when they are being talked about.

Natascha Ochsenknecht on an excursion for children

Natascha Ochsenknecht, a mother of three herself, now delivers pizzas and sushi and a check in an orange Lieferand jacket. The customers of the delivery service and the company donated 45,000 euros. It can prepare 10,000 meals, says an Arche representative. That sounds like a lot.

But now Arche cares for 5,000 children and families in more than 30 locations in Germany. All the auxiliary equipment works there. Public drumming and collaborations like Lieferando’s are part of the business. Ochsenknecht also worked as a delivery driver in Hamburg and Munich.

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Only those who stay in the conversation will get attention, whether it’s in terms of donations or audience numbers. Notable support, like Natascha Ochsenknecht’s here, increases visibility. This text also would not have been created without a press invitation. The children and helpers in the arch deserve attention even without a celebrity visit.

Lieferando is the market leader in the industry, which earned record sales during the Corona pandemic, when more and more people ordered food at home. Drivers have recently protested repeatedly for better working conditions and fair wages. Doing a little good is good for everyone.

Lieferand CEO Katharina Hauke, Arche representative Paul Höltge and Natascha Ochsenknecht.
Lieferand CEO Katharina Hauke, Arche representative Paul Höltge and Natascha Ochsenknecht. Volkmar Otto

Sushi in the spotlight

While Niko and John keep the pizza and sushi in the spotlight, but still can’t bite because of the photographers, Arche’s rep reports how inflation and rising prices are making club life difficult. Middle-class families, who would otherwise donate smaller amounts, would be left out, says Paul Höltge.

More expensive food products, higher electricity prices, fewer donors and more customers – the three corners of Ark are on fire. In the past, people often depended on donated food only at the end of the month, but now some come three or four times.

Niko (12) and John (10) also come regularly. When Natascha Ochsenknecht is dragged outside by an entourage of photographers, the two finally dig in. The sushi is delicious, is it the tuna? Raw? Can we take the rest of the pizzas with us, the boys ask. They want to go to another youth center where there is a Christmas party today. The reporter asks how they find Natasha. Beautiful, friendly, what else.

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It is a pity that there are so few children

In the end, Jeanette Borchert, head of Arche in Wedding, sits almost alone at the table. “It’s a pity that there are so few children here today,” says a worker in passing. Jeanette Borchert has been babysitting children in the neighborhood for years. First in her apartment, then in the community center, since 2009. in collaboration with Arche. Here they reach up to 200 children. “We’re like one big family,” she says.

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Every day lunch comes from the Arche headquarters in Hellersdorf. But it’s actually much more for the kids who signed on the big board at the entrance….

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