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As January and February come to an end, we reflect on our activities over the past two months.

Here’s a summary of our initiatives:

  • January special focus on education
  • Biddinghuizen Rolling Aid Event
  • Young Colfield Volunteer Day
  • Digital support for a classroom in Lijnden
  • Winter clothing donations
  • New Partnerships
  • Amstelveen Rolling Aid Event
  • Zelhem Rolling Aid Event
  • Our 2023 impact in numbers


  • People for People turns 2!

January’s special focus on education

In the run-up to the International Day of Education (January 24th), we wanted to highlight the importance of providing educational opportunities to asylum seekers — both status holders and those still in the process of applying for asylum. These individuals have been forced to leave their homes for a variety of reasons, what they have in common is their motivation to build a peaceful and prosperous life.

Access to education serves as a crucial pathway to self-sufficiency and a brighter future. Moreover, it nurtures talents and minds that will contribute to the future of their adopted country.

This month, we concentrated on empowering unaccompanied minors with the necessary tools and resources for continuous learning. So far this year, we achieved the following milestones:

🎒202 school bags with supplies for unaccompanied minors in Biddinghuizen, Baarn, Harderwijk and Beekbergen, Rekken and Amstelveen. ✨

🖥️ 12 laptops to shelters in Lijnden and Beekbergen to be used for schoolwork, language learning, and fostering the establishment of self-designed education programs when access to school is unavailable 

📚We also collected information on study and scholarship programs for asylum seekers in the Netherlands and created a guide to free Dutch language learning resources

We’ll share more details about these activities below.

Biddinghuizen Rolling Aid Event

At our Rolling Aid event in Biddinghuizen on January 4th, we met 50 unaccompanied minors who were eager to start school soon. To support their education, we donated backpacks and school supplies so they’d be ready to hit the ground running. We also donated hygiene products including toothpaste, shampoo and more. 

At our painting and drawing table, one of our volunteers introduced a new game called the three-color challenge, which turned out to be a big hit! Within three minutes the kids had to draw a picture using only three colors. The energy was high as the competitive spirit of the kids filled the air. 🎨

We also organized a pizza-baking workshop. It was great to see the kids proudly sharing their pizza with others. 🍕

The People for People team and volunteers at Biddinghuizen

Young Colfield Volunteer Day

Shoutout to the amazing team at Young Colfield! 🙌🏽Their enthusiastic trainees joined us in the first week of January, eager to make a difference. 🌈✨ The tech-savvy youngsters dedicated their volunteer day to help us set up laptops destined for various COA locations for an exciting month of education ahead.

This collaboration not only provided practical support but also raised awareness among Dutch youth about the challenges faced by asylum seekers. 

If your company is ready to use its volunteer days for a meaningful cause, we’d love to have you on board! Reach out to us at Let’s create positive change together! 💻📚

Digital support for a classroom initiative in Lijnden

We received word that unaccompanied minors in Lijnden don’t have access to schools yet, so employees at the location developed a plan to provide classes themselves until the children are moved to a new asylum shelter. We lent them school supplies and 10 laptops so they could kick off this great initiative. ✨

Winter Donation: Sharing Warmth 

Many children across the country weren’t able to go to school because they didn’t have winter clothing like jackets, shoes or gloves. Thanks to the help of our volunteers, we sorted and packed all the donated items in our warehouse into efficient stacks to make it easier to move fast when we get an urgent request for warm clothing. 

In Kampen, Wervershoof, Harderwijk, and Beekbergen, we donated jackets, gloves, hats, socks, undergarments and more to keep the kids warm during the winter months. 

Sorting donations in the People for People warehouse

New partnerships

Sometimes we also help donors find places to donate items we cannot use. For example, clothes in very big sizes, bicycle equipment, etc. By building partnerships with local charities, we can help ensure these items reach the people who need them most. 

This month we established a partnership with Armoedefonds, a poverty fund that supports local charities. Through this collaboration Hebben en Houwe, a clothing bank for residents with low income, and other foundations were able to pick up items at our warehouse. We also donated 29 laptops to Allemaal Digitaal, which helps make the internet and digital tools accessible across the country.

Collective action is what People for People is all about so we’re excited to be partnering with more amazing initiatives across the country and abroad.

Rolling Aid Event in Amstelveen

We organized a Rolling Aid event for 60 unaccompanied minors between the ages of 14-17 in Amstelveen. They had just arrived in this new location after having moved several times. We quickly jumped into action to organize a special welcome event.

The boys were extremely grateful to finally be settled, especially because it means they’ll get to go to school for the first time in the Netherlands. Thanks to our partners, we provided backpacks and school supplies to all 60 kids so they’re ready to learn and grow, whatever their dreams may be.🎒🚀

Throughout the event, we organized fun activities from games to drawing and painting to a small soccer match. But perhaps the most popular activity of all was our pizza-making workshop. 🍕

The kitchen quickly filled with the sounds of happy chattering and laughter as the boys came together to learn how to roll out the dough, choose their own toppings and cook their pizza to a crispy, golden brown. It was a great activity especially because most of them aren’t confident in the kitchen. Through this workshop, we were able to show them that cooking can be fun and, most of all, give you delicious results in the end. 😋

People for People Rolling Aid event in Amstelveen

Raymond, the location manager, came by our office the week after to surprise us with this beautiful poster the kids made for us. It says “Thank you so much for your kindness.” ❤️

Amstelveen COA member visiting People for People office

Rolling Aid Event in Zelhem

On February 29th, we visited the Zelhem COA location with 69 unaccompanied minors. The shelter, which is located in a holiday park/conference center, is very remote so the kids don’t have a lot of opportunities for activities. Because of this, they’ll be closing the location down in April so the kids can be moved somewhere more suitable. In the meantime, we decided to organize a fun day to keep them active.

The kids were super excited and in a matter of minutes all the activities we organized were full, from the drawing and painting to games to our popular pizza-making workshop. We ended the day with some music and dancing. 🕺

The People for People team at a Rolling Aid event in Zelhem

We were touched to see this thank you note one girl made for us:

Thank you note from an unaccompanied minor in Zelhem

Our 2023 impact in numbers

2023 was a whirlwind year for People for People. From jumping into action to provide emergency aid after the earthquakes in Turkey, Syria and Morocco to connecting with unaccompanied minors who bravely journeyed on their own to the Netherlands, we’ve continued on our mission to support and empower people forced to flee their homes.

Thanks to the tireless efforts of our team, volunteers, partners and founders bunq, Bird and Picnic Technologies, we calculated that we were able to make a positive impact on the lives of 37,000 people in 2023, more than doubling our impact in 2022.

We teamed up with animator Luuk Hendriks of After It Moves®, illustrator and designer Iris van den Akker, voice-over professional Claire Schuyffel, and sound studio Public Audio to create this beautiful infographic. Find out more about our impact in numbers:

Looking forward

  • People for People turns 2!

On March 8th, People for People will celebrate its 2nd anniversary as an organization. We’re proud to have reached this milestone and can’t wait to spread our impact even further.