Give a Day connects citizens, schools, non-profits, municipalities and businesses, and gives them the tools and the desire to tackle societal challenges through voluntary commitment. Our 9-member crew believes that the overall impact is more sustainable, bigger and more positive, if we can let these different actors work together.
Voluntary commitment makes a difference for society, but is also valuable for yourself. You get to know new friends, use your experience, improve skills, make fun, experiment, join in, strengthen the neighborhood, look behind the scenes, help others, find a goal and your place ... Much more than a practical platform we are also a strong community of changemakers.
The idea to set up a matching platform for volunteers and volunteer projects came into being in v2015 when the refugee crisis raged in the tent camps of Calais . The great stream of solidarity that started with the population was heart-warming, but did not always go smoothly. People were moving around the country: they collected items, sorted and packed them, transported them and set up projects on the spot. To enable these voluntary efforts to proceed optimally, Koen and Bart decided to build a first matching website.
The idea ripened further. Because many associations, organizations, charities and NGOs also expressed their great need for volunteers. In cocreation with 50 non-profits and 100 volunteers we decided to develop the ideal umbrella matching website, on which volunteers and organizations could find each other. Give a Day was born! Together with the co-creation group we made the first designs. The building itself cost a lot of money, so we did in May 2016 participated in a few competitions - the Pleasant premiums of Q Music and Apps From Antwerp - that we won Jackpot!
Due to the accompanying media attention, a few like-minded volunteers who wanted to strengthen our core team. Michael became our designer in March 2016. He made the winning Apps From Antwerp video, recorded by Frank Bomans from Thuis. Koen was forced to stop due to lack of time, but was relieved by Filip and Dennis : the IT heroes who developed the website, often to a hole in the night. Also Elise - the volunteer coordinator of one of the co-operating organizations - joined our team. She devoted herself to the substantive support of organizations in modern volunteer recruitment and policy. A month later we received Goele with open arms. She wanted companies and charities to reinforce each other through positive projects. Not through the old methods of charity, but by having them work together with a view to a long-term impact. In August also joined Nik the team. A creative teacher who wanted to transform students into social changemakers through design thinking methods and the citizenship concept Way to Go. The circle was then as good as round. This broad team enabled us to bring all actors together and inject voluntary input into the DNA of the Belgian.
In October 2016 we launched a first version of the matching platform www.giveaday.be . In 2017 the platform was expanded and improved and completed Tim (IT) and Lien (communication strategist) the team. In March we took www.vrijwilligersjobs.be about, to be able to implement it a year later.
Meanwhile, the website grew from 5,000 annual visitors to 55,000 annual visitors , from 120 organizations to 800 organizations and from 50 volunteers to 1,300 volunteers . In April 2017 the first local platforms of Give a Day launched in Neerpelt and Merelbeke. The school project on citizenship â € ~Way to Goâ € ™ started in the Waterbaan in Deurne in September of the same year. Students went to work through positive citizenship projects supervised by Give a Day and partners.
Our first business project was organized in October 2017: the Impact Day of Bol.com. A resounding success that was received with great enthusiasm by the primary school and the rest home in Boom. The employees of Bol.com taught digital skills to students and rest home residents. Signs of the great need for connectors for a positive impact.
Today Give a Day receives more and more requests from schools, municipalities and companies to start joint projects and team building, with a view to a positive impact on society. We can barely keep track of the questions to our volunteers and our local volunteer matching platforms are also catching on. Both Bruges, Antwerp, Hasselt, Oostkamp, ??Merelbeke, Neerpelt and Schoten will be launched in the first half of 2018. The start of a big wave, because we are now also looking abroad. Our goal? To be able to volunteer via Give a Day around the world and to start positive projects. On to an international movement for an international impact! We already have an appetite!