Powerful communities

During our SALT visits between 2011 and 2017, the Dutch facilitator teams were energized and inspired by the power of Dutch communities. We visited students, mother support groups, second hand shops run by neighbors, couples who organize kids's activities and support many families, meeting places for creative social entrepreneurs, you name it!

Not every powerful group has a website and to name them all would make this list too long. But to get a glimpse of what is happening, you can click on the titles below and learn about a few communities that truely inspired us: 

No job? Look for strengths, link & support: the Broekriem Check out on this link how a group of unemployed people supports each other to stay positive and find new opportunities when looking for a job. Today they have grown in a professional organisation that is organising meetups and events all over the Netherlands. 

Looking for strengths brought this neighborhood back to life: de Meevaart  This community center today is vibrating with healthy, fun, social, jummy, cultural, practical, artistic and always colorful activities from people in the neighborhood for their neighbors. Quite exceptional when you think this neighborhood was once targeted by the government as heavily challenged and with little future. Starting to look for strengths, then connecting them, was what made the difference. Now everyone wants to learn from what they did. You can watch a short video here

An empty building transformed in the neighbourhoud hub: Werkplaats K is the place where a group of local artists decided that rather than stay at home and work individually, they would occupy an empty building in town. Today it has become an exciting meeting place for local artists, where children get art education and people come to visit from far away. 

A dream for our kids: droomplein A group of neighbours decided to give the empty place at the heart of their village a new life. They took action and built a place for their kids to play. 

How to get connected with your neighbours in a big city? Buurtbel is a place where neighbours who don't know each other yet can ask for and offer help to each other. Like walking someone's dog, help out with getting out of bed, do groceries together,... it creates connection in a big city and brings the neighbourhood closer together.  

When refugees share their cultural wealth with us: Mezrab today is a well established cultural centre in Amsterdam where people from different cultures get together for concerts, stand up comedy, sharing stories,... It has grown from 2 refugees who started sharing their cultural wealth with Dutch neighbours: singing songs and telling stories in their own living room.  

Come here to learn about inclusion: The Worldhouse, a vibrant and international community where people from all over the world are welcome to be themselves, relax, and get support to take a step forward in life. We were blown away by the genuine welcome that is here for everyone, and how this creates a vibrant space where people take up plenty of new initiatives.

Transforming pain into value for society: Stichting Vluchtelingen Ambassadeurs is formed by a group of former refugees who are sharing their own life stories and holding debates in Dutch organisations to create more awareness and insight around the theme of seeking asylum, integration and human rights in the Netherlands.  

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