Queen Presents Orange Fund Awards to Projects for the Mentally Vulnerable
Saba — Expertise Center Education Care Saba is among the winners of the 2021 Appeltjes van Oranje award. This was just announced at the presentation of the Orange Fund awards at Noordeinde Palace in the Netherlands. Also among the winners were Ixta Noa from Arnhem and the Vriendendiensten foundation’s “self-management” housing shelters (zelfregiecentra) in Deventer, the Netherlands. The winners, who are all working on behalf of the mentally vulnerable, were handed their prizes by Queen Máxima.
The Appeltjes van Oranje awards are presented annually by the Orange Fund to social projects aimed at ensuring that no member of our society stands alone. The theme for this year is Mental Strength, meaning that this year’s awards go to projects engaging volunteers to ensure that people with mental health issues can fully participate in society. Twelve projects were nominated, including the Equine Foundation of Curaçao, and each was represented at the award ceremony. Due to the COVID-19 measures in force, only a limited number could attend the ceremony live. The event was therefore also broadcast via livestream and can be followed on oranjefonds.nl.
The Ways of Wellbeing project, by Expertise Center Education Care Saba, offers support to children with disabilities as well as to their parents. The last few years have been especially hard on these children due to Hurricane Irma, which hit the island in 2017, and the corona crisis, which completely cut it off from the outside world.
Ixta Noa won the Big Appeltje van Oranje because of their unique style of continuous development and innovation. At Ixta Noa, people with mental health problems receive support from experts by experience. Vriendendiensten’s housing shelters make sure that people having mental issues can rejoin society. Numerous activities are organized where they can meet other people, including others with a similar condition.
The Orange Fund is committed to building a more cohesive society, one where people are there for each other and everyone is able to participate. To this end, it mobilizes, strengthens and supports as many individuals and organizations as possible to ensure that no one is left behind. Support is provided in the form of knowledge, networking, money, time and acknowledgment. The Fund is supported by the Nationale Postcode Loterij, the Dutch Lottery, friends and businesses, among others. King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima are the Orange Fund’s patrons.