Life at our sustainable incubator, De Ceuvel, in Amsterdam-Noord, had come to a brief halt with the announcement of the pandemic in March. Most members of our association worked from home and the café was also completely closed. Therefore, on April 18, De Ceuvel opened its doors until October 1 for a group of people who would otherwise be out on the street.
Even at the beginning of the corona crisis, it became clear that all the beautiful summer concerts, workshops on plants, lectures on sustainable dome building and vibrant festivals would be cancelled. For cultural programmer, Esther Weller, it began to gnaw a bit. Together with Huib Koel, shipbuilder on the NDSM, first guard of the Ceuvel and owner of Asile Flottant, after a strong cup of coffee she contacted Stichting Family on a Mission.
The Foundation Family on a Mission, consists of three courageous women with a lot of experience in guiding and supporting refugees, undocumented and young people with a distance to the labor market. For over a year these women have been caring for a group of undocumented youth who were staying in a garage in Amsterdam Zuidoost. Due to the corona crisis, despite the inexhaustible care and help they offered, the situation became even more dire. That is why the foundation, together with De Ceuvel, the Municipality of Amsterdam and the GGD, joined forces to offer the boys a temporary day-care location at De Ceuvel. The government has also opened a night shelter a few minutes cycling from De Ceuvel.
Initially we assumed that the day care at De Ceuvel could continue until the reopening of the catering industry. Due to the success of this project together with the municipality we decided to extend this fruitful time for the boys. Together we try to find a sustainable solution for each individual youngster.
When it came to the care of the Mandela Kids, we received advice from Aukje Polder of De Regenboog, an organization with daycare centers for the homeless. All regulations and measures that are applied in regular daycare centers were also applied to De Ceuvel. Additional sanitary facilities were also installed and the day activities were conducted in small groups under the supervision of the organization at De Ceuvel. In addition, we worked together with Dokters van de Wereld to monitor the health of the group and the volunteers. In this way we protected ourselves, the people around us and of course the most important group, the Mandela Kids.
You can make a donation on we website of The Family on a Mission Foundation. Because of the close cooperation with these three power women we can guarantee you with 100% that every cent is well spent and goes to people who really need it. They know better than anyone what is needed when they receive a donation.