With heart, hand, and shovel

Dussmann team plants the future in Berlin’s Grunewald forest

  • Employees worldwide volunteered as part of a campaign marking the 60th anniversary of the Dussmann Group
  • The Dussmann Group counted each of the 5,800 hours worked as one tree and rounded up to 10,000
  • The first 1,000 trees were planted in a group event marking the 11th Social Day held by the family company in Berlin
© Dussmann Group / Fotos: Thomas Ecke
© Dussmann Group / Fotos: Thomas Ecke
„Wir pflanzen Zukunft“ war das Motto der Jubiläumsaktion zum 60. Geburtstag der Dussmann Group
„Wir pflanzen Zukunft“ war das Motto der Jubiläumsaktion zum 60. Geburtstag der Dussmann Group

28.11.2023 – A thousand new trees for Berlin’s Grunewald forest: 60 employees of the Dussmann Group, a family company, planted oak and yew trees in the Dreilinden forest area in Berlin’s Zehlendorf district. During the annual Social Day event, employees picked up shovels and coped with blisters as they planted the future and took action to protect the climate. The oak trees are replacing pines that had died. The newly planted yews are intended to lend structure to the landscape.

To mark its 60th anniversary, the Dussmann Group, a Berlin-based service company, called on its 66,000 employees worldwide to participate in a campaign called “We Plant the Future” (Wir pflanzen Zukunft). For every hour employees volunteered while the campaign was running, the company committed to plant one tree. That added up to 5,800 trees, and the Dussmann Group rounded up to 10,000. Dussmann employees volunteered for a wide range of causes worldwide: They renovated a school, collected trash, repaired bikes, helped out with children’s celebrations, distributed food, and much more.

Catherine von Fürstenberg-Dussmann, sponsor of the “We Plant the Future” campaign

“It’s awesome to see what you achieved with all your hard work! This is another sign of just how important giving back is to us. I’m very proud of how involved our employees are all over the world,” said Catherine von Fürstenberg-Dussmann. In addition to her role as Chair of the Board of Trustees, von Fürstenberg-Dussmann also sponsored the “We Plant the Future” campaign and even pitched in to help with the tree planting in the Grunewald forest. CEO Wolf-Dieter Adlhoch added, “Along with today’s tree planting in Berlin, there will be others in the German states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Saxony and in Ireland, Austria, Estonia, and Lithuania. All over the world, our employees are giving back to the environment.”

Social Day is a tradition dating back to 2013 at the Dussmann Group. It was started because giving back to society is an integral element of the corporate culture at the international family company. The Executive Board and employees work side by side every year. In 2022, for example, they renovated the exterior of a home for children and teens in Berlin’s Wannsee district. 

Every tree absorbs carbon dioxide – but how much?

Forests play a crucial role in fighting the greenhouse effect – in not just one, but three different ways. First, forested areas absorb CO2 from the atmosphere. This carbon sequestration is extended, second, when wood is used for things like new construction and furniture, locking the carbon that has been absorbed inside it. Third, wood substitutes for other energy-intensive materials such as concrete, which generates huge amounts of CO2 during production. As a general rule, one hectare of forest captures about six tons of CO2 a year across its entire lifespan.


Michaela Mehls
Press Spokesperson, Dussmann Group
+49 30 2025 2525

About the Dussmann Group 
At the Dussmann Group, 66,000 people work across 21 countries, contributing their ideas and passion for people. The Berlin-based service company posted Group sales of €2.8 billion across its three divisions in 2022. The largest of the divisions, Dussmann, provides solutions born of its passion for facility management, food services, and technical solutions. Dussmann Facility Management combines all of the services involved in integrated facility management, with a high proportion of the work performed in-house within the organization: building cleaning, security services, building technology, electrical and communications technology, and charging solutions for electric vehicles. Dussmann Food Services offers diverse and sustainable dining concepts for children, employees, patients, and residents of senior facilities, all with warm hospitality. Dussmann Technical Solutions encompasses all of the business units involved in technical plant and systems engineering and technical services. They offer solutions spanning the entire life cycle of systems and buildings, from planning and installation to commissioning, service, and repairs in the fields of electrical engineering, automation technology, cooling, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, and elevator technology. Joint venture Code Blue by Dussmann provides cybersecurity solutions to protect companies before, during, and after cyberattacks. The Care & Kids division operates the Kursana brand, providing care for 13,400 seniors, and the Dussmann KulturKindergarten brand, which provides child care for working parents. The family-run Dussmann Group also operates Germany’s largest media store, Dussmann das KulturKaufhaus, which is located in Berlin.