This past week our Couchsurfing Ambassador in Chemnitz, Germany received his city’s peace prize for his life work, of which Couchsurfing is a major part. According to the official press release, “The Chemnitz Peace Prize is a civil society prize from citizens for citizens. The prize is awarded to people, organisations, projects and initiatives from Chemnitz who stand up for basic values such as tolerance and democracy, who regard the integration of different cultures as an essential part of our coexistence, who take a stand against any form of exclusion, xenophobia and racism, who do active peace work and promote and support non-violent coexistence.”
According to the press release Viktor was awarded the prize largely due to his work on Couchsurfing. “His themes are mutual understanding, understanding and breaking down prejudices as the basis for peaceful coexistence. He brings these values into society in a wide variety of ways and shines far beyond the borders of our city as a role model and humanist. Probably his biggest project is building a group of over 4000 open-minded, warm-hearted hosts in Chemnitz, a Couchsurfing network. He has traveled to countless countries, speaks many languages and everywhere he works for peace, for the coexistence of people and cultures – and against violence.”
Viktor has been on Couchsurfing since 2009, and over the last 13 years has been an active host and event organizer, accruing nearly 400 positive references. He has been a Couchsurfing Ambassador since 2011 and is currently a mentor for new Ambassadors, helping guide and inspire them to grow and strengthen their communities in the same way he has in Chemnitz.