Although the Netherlands is one of the world’s wealthiest countries, at least one in eight Dutch children – or more than 423,000 kids – grows up in a family living at the poverty line.
The current COVID-19 prevention measures – though necessary – compound the difficulties families and children are facing: Overstretched parents are forced to juggle full-time jobs while also teaching and reassuring their children in these uncertain times. Though the leisure activities and facilities that would normally provide some stability for these children have recently reopened, many families have lost the ability to finance them.
Smith has had a presence in Amsterdam for over 20 years, and supporting the community our Netherlands office calls home matters deeply to us. Our European hub recently donated 34 19″ Dell LCD screens to IT4Kids, supporting the organization’s vision: to give all children who are unable to exercise – whether from physical limitations or financial difficulties – the opportunity to participate in sports and physical activity programming.
IT4Kids collects depreciated IT hardware, provides a sustainable second life to the equipment, and recycles anything not suitable for refurbishment. The group then donates the value of the assets to sustainable sports programming for children in the Netherlands. The beneficiaries include projects such as judo, girls’ sporting events, and the Dirk Kuyt Foundation, which supports children with physical disabilities.
“This program is particularly close to my heart, as I was involved in service projects during my student days and saw how many children live without even the bare essentials for life,” said Annemarie Sipos-Kuiper, Human Resources Assistant at Smith’s Amsterdam office. “I’m glad that Smith was able to do something good with the retired hardware and bring some variety to these children’s lives.”
Children can learn many important life skills – such as respect, resilience, teamwork, and coping mechanisms – by participating in sports. Smith is committed to helping the most vulnerable children in its global communities have access to the same opportunities as their classmates in order to grow both physically and emotionally.