Every year, anyone in the Netherlands can nominate a local charity to the ING Netherlands foundation, which then goes on to select five buurtverbeteraars, or ‘neighbourhood improvers’, in over fifty different regions in the country. The campaign is called Help Nederland vooruit (‘Help move the Netherlands forward’) and gives out donations of up to 5000 euros to hundreds of small initiatives that benefit the community.
To celebrate five years of Help Nederland vooruit, to show the great volunteer work being done up and down the country, and also to publicise the latest nominations procedure, we’ve asked a journalist and a photographer to profile five previous beneficiaries. The articles were published through series of sponsored social media posts that, for once, did not show an ad for one of ING’s banking services. After a click, a short video loop of a buurtverbeteraar gave way to a written article, highlighting the charity as well as the impact that the campaign has had.
New Amsterdam creative director Giuseppe de Crocq sees it as a form of ‘branded journalism’ and approached freelance journalist Hagar Jobse and 3D motion photographer @theboomerangboss to profile four very different initiative neighbourhood improvers: SchuldHulpMaatje, which helps people with financial debts, the Friendship Sports Centre for handicapped children, Re-Boost, which helps young adults (re-)build their lives, and the summer activities program of Stichting Actieve Senioren for lonely and/or poor senior citizens.