Yasmeen Akhtar is Director at the Alexander Haus e.V in the village of Groß Glienicke, a 40-minute drive from the bustle of Berlin. The centre is dedicated to bringing people together from different cultures and religions, within German and European societies, with a global perspective. 

Alexander Haus was found derelict by writer Thomas Harding in 2013 who returned to his grandmother’s house on the outskirts of Berlin. She had been forced to leave when the Nazis swept to power. A concrete footpath now cut through the garden, marking where the Berlin Wall had stood for nearly three decades. In his book ‘House by the Lake’ he illustrates 100 years of German history through the five families who had lived there: a nobleman farmer, his own prosperous Jewish family, a renowned Nazi composer, a widow and her children and a Stasi informant.

These stories and the elegant wooden lake house now lie at the centre of the programming work developed there.

Previously, Yasmeen has been Chief Executive of TrustLab; a Diversity and Inclusion Consultancy, Programmes Manager at leading Interfaith and Intercultural charity; The Faith and Beliefs Forum (TFBF), Principal Consultant at the Church Urban Funds ‘Near Neighbours Programme’, and Programmes Executive at The Lokahi Foundation.