Why I support Movement

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When it comes to donations, people often think of giving money. And of course, money is of the utmost importance to any ngo. But what’s often overlooked, is the possibility to donate talent, or to donate the expertise of your company. That’s exactly what Toon Oostveen decided to do with his company ULC Group. He explains why and how he does this.

“For me it started with a good friend, Charlie McGregor, who co-founded Movement On The Ground. He is not only very successful in business, but he also has time and energy to think of other people. It was really inspiring to see him do this, and that definitely got me going as well. 

After I decided to support Movement with my company, we organized a kick-off meeting at our office. Johnny de Mol, Charlie McGregor and Nina Schmitz gave an incredible presentation, after which all the employees were on board with this new project of ours. We started by collecting a lot of clothes that were sent to Lesvos, but I wanted to use my company’s expertise as well." 

"Five employees went to Lesvos to volunteer, but they also were given the task to come up with something that the people really need, and with which we could help. On top of that, they had to make a video, which we used to show the other employees what was going on, and which inspired the rest of the company. They came back with the idea of creating a wood workshop. A container, that we transformed into a wood workshop with tools and everything you would need to build things. A practical thing, that can also be used to teach people a skill which they can later put to use wherever they live." 

"You know what an incredible moment was for me? When I was on Lesvos, they hosted an opening ceremony for the workshop. The moment people saw what it was, I was approached by residents who showed me pictures of work they made in their home country. With those pictures, the enthusiasm and the power with which they spoke about it showed me that they want to contribute and that we should try to help and empower the people because they want to work instead of sitting around. 

I had some doubts at first to publicly announce that we are helping Movement as a company. Because the sentiment in the Netherlands is quite complex, and not everyone shares my view. But at some point, I decided to just go for it, and so far, I’ve received only positive reactions. 

Not only from other companies, or people outside my organization, but also from the team at ULC Group. Working together for a good cause forms a bond that regular work doesn’t. I would highly recommend all companies to look at what they can do to help. For the refugees, for yourself and for your employees.”

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